Remembering Patrick Fisher, chased to death by NSW Police

Patrick Fisher. Photo: Indigenous Social Justice Association

Waka Waka man and father of three Patrick Fisher was remembered by his family and friends on February 7 in front of the Waterloo housing block, where he fell to his death after being chased by NSW Police three years ago. Fisher was just 31 year's old.

Fisher’s mother Aunty Candice Williams spoke, along with Aunty Frances White, Gabe Foster and Ross Fisher. Indigenous Social Justice Association (ISJA) activists Faith Black and Raul Bassi chaired the memorial.

“They took my baby away … I hurt very much every day … I am not forgetting,” Williams said.

Fisher died of his injuries after falling from the 13th floor of the Joseph Banks tower block after four officers had kicked in the unit door. The police had two outstanding warrants for him.

White, Fisher’s mother-in-law, said: “Carly White, the mother of Patrick’s children, lives in pain and trauma every day. The children are living in pain. It is so unfair the police get away with it. They need to be held accountable to what they did to Patrick.

“This family is shattered. We want a proper inquiry in to what happened; we want the truth. The coroner needs to look deeper because Patrick was a human being, a father, not a statistic.”

The coronial inquest into Fisher’s death, which took place almost two years after he fell to his death, found that the “police were aware of the possibility that Fisher might attempt to climb over the balcony, as records showed he avoided or attempted to avoid police on 44 other occasions”.

But, as Bassi told the gathering, the police “never tried to speak to him”.

“The coroner did not investigate the reasons for the fall,” Bassi told Green Left. “They also cut the inquiry back by two days, after telling the family there would be a five- day hearing. They could have used the two days to investigate the reasons for Fisher’s fall.”

Foster, a friend of Fisher, said: “The police need to be held accountable. The sad reality is that we, Indigenous people, are overlooked. The police are there when they take someone into custody or when they decide they need to take a child, they are there in a heartbeat. But when we are victims of abuse, of over incarceration, the police are nowhere to be seen.”

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