Police handling and storing of evidence under spotlight in public hearing 13

Jun 29, 2023

The next public hearing of the Special Commission of Inquiry into LGBTIQ hate crimes will focus on the investigative practices of the NSW Police Force between 1970 and 2010, and any changes to these practices and procedures that that have occurred since that time.  

This hearing of the Inquiry will be conducted from 10am each day over a period of three days from 4 to 6 July 2023 at the Chief Secretary’s Building, Level 2, 121 Macquarie Street, Sydney. The hearings are open to the public and will be livestreamed via the Inquiry’s website.

It is expected that the public hearing will include evidence relating to:

  1. The investigative processes of the NSW Police Force, including the processes for handling and storing exhibits and other police records;
  2. The training and education of NSW Police Force homicide detectives, including their training and education in relation to suspected bias crime and in dealing with the LGBTIQ community;
  3. The process the Unsolved Homicide Team adopts in reviewing unsolved homicides; and
  4. The developments in DNA technology and forensic science, including the relevance of those developments to the investigation of unsolved homicides or cold case investigations.

The Inquiry will hear from senior NSW Police officers involved in these matters, as well as a representative of the Forensic and Analytical Science Service.

It is anticipated that the following witnesses will be called to give oral evidence during this hearing:

  • Assistant Commissioner Rashelle Conroy – Forensic Evidence and Technical Services Command
  • Detective Superintendent Daniel Doherty – Commander, Homicide Squad
  • Superintendent Roger Best – Crime Scene Services Branch
  • Detective Chief Inspector David Laidlaw – Homicide Squad
  • Detective Inspector Nigel Warren – Homicide Squad
  • Clint Cochrane – Forensic and Analytical Science Service
  • Dr Cheryl Allsop – Senior Lecturer in Criminology, University of South Wales

The Honourable Justice John Sackar will preside at the hearing. Counsel Assisting the Inquiry will be James Emmett SC and Rebecca McEwen.

Any person or organisation with a direct and substantial interest in the subject matter of this hearing, as outlined in Practice Guideline 1, is able to make an application for authorisation to appear by 5pm on 29 June 2023.

Journalists wishing to cover the hearing should notify the Inquiry’s media team to ensure access to the media room and/or relevant information including schedules and transcripts.

All inquiries in relation to the hearing should be directed to [email protected].

The schedule is subject to change and does not necessarily contain all activities, hearings and engagements that the Inquiry will undertake.

It will be updated as more information becomes available.