A Victim of Rough Justice

Even though he won his murder trial, Officer Zachary Rolfe was a victim of rough justice.

A Victim of Rough Justice
Photo by Tingey Injury Law Firm / Unsplash

Some good news in earlier this afternoon.

The Police Officer charged with the murder of Kumanjayi Walker has been found not guilty.

This was an important victory, not only for the defendant

Zachary Rolfe but for confidence in our legal system. Rolfe had a crack team of lawyers and barristers, many hailing from South Australia.

Having been charged with murder he clearly needed them, but he shouldn’t have.

In my mind, any police officer who is being attacked with a pair of scissors and suffers a stab wound would be entitled to use deadly force.

Some may choose not to but that decision could also cost them their life.

Our law enforcement officers perform a very difficult job. It’s not for everyone and there are times when some of them clearly get carried away with their own importance.

Some of the Victorian police actions in recent years spring to mind.

It’s tough to defend or justify those actions but often the officers have been held to account appropriately through our legal system.

On other occasions, while we may disagree with what they are doing, they are simply upholding the law.

For that you should blame the politicians rather than the officers lack of discretion.

But back to Rolfe.

This young officer’s life has been turned upside down because he shot and killed someone who had stabbed him.

Rolfe was a victim, and yet he was charged with murder.

The assailant, Kumanjayi Walker was a person with a history of violence and one can gather, other behavioural issues.

His death is unfortunate but it isn’t a bi-product of racism or black lives not mattering.

His death was a result of his actions that forced a police officer to react in the manner he did.

The use of deadly force is a huge decision for any man or woman.

There are myriad considerations that must race through the mind of one in such a position, but if you’d been stabbed by a scissor wielding offender, first and foremost would be your own safety and that of those around you.

In those few seconds, Rolfe's life changed forever. It will never be the same.

And for those who are demanding police officers go unarmed in certain communities, when do the rest of us say enough is enough.

Why would we ask police officers to place their lives at additional risk to satisfy the demands of a few.

It’s my strong belief that the laws of this land should apply equally to all citizens and the right of our law enforcement officers to be armed on the job should be upheld wherever it is deemed necessary.

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