TASMANIA: A 13-year-old Aboriginal girl has been held in a Hobart jail cell for a night and stripped of her clothes by Tasmania Police for absolutely no reason after she was detained for supposedly breaking a non-existent curfew.
The 13-year-old girl was arrested on Wednesday, January 9 before being detained in a cell overnight.
She was however immediately released the next morning when taken before a Magistrate.
The Magistrate reportedly found that not only was the girl not under any sort of curfew, but that police had acted unlawfully in arresting the child and depriving her freedom.
Chairman of the Aboriginal Land Council of Tasmania, Michael Mansell, has said the girl’s parents are now seeking legal counsel over the incident, and may sue Tasmania Police for false imprisonment.
“[The girl] was allegedly stripped of all her clothes and given other clothing to cover herself,” Mr Mansell said.
The troubling incident comes just a few days after Tasmania Police were criticised for locking up two Aboriginal youths, aged 16 and 17, for two days and two nights, before a Magistrate released one of the pair.
The youths had been held at the Hobart Remand Centre and weren’t given any opportunity to receive legal advice.
Some members of Tasmania’s Aboriginal community have also now criticised the Victorian-based Aboriginal Legal Service as it does not provide out-of-hours advice to Tasmanian clients.
They are now calling for more comprehensive legal services to be made available for the state’s Indigenous community.
Mr Mansell has said the latest incident is just “more outrageous conduct by Tasmania Police with the Aboriginal Legal Service nowhere to be seen”.
True Crime News Weekly has contacted Tasmania Police for comment.
We queried as to whether police will be apologising to the girl and her family, as well as whether racism was an institutional issue within the force.
We have not received a response so far.