Pat, a 16-year-old Aboriginal boy, was killed on September 28, 1983, after a fight erupted between a drunken off-duty police officer and local Aboriginal people in Roebourne, Western Australia. Pat was passing by at the time and was drawn into the melee by police. Pat was subsequently struck by a police officer, falling backwards and hitting his head on the pavement. Denied medical assistance, he died a just a little more than an hour after he was locked up.
“This has to be the last death”, Nioka Chatfield, the mother of a 22-year-old Aboriginal man who recently died in custody told a rally in Sydney on September 29.
“I nominate myself. I want to be the last Aboriginal mother crying for my child,” she told the protest that was called on the first anniversary of Wayne Fella Morrison's death in custody and the 34th anniversary of the death of John Pat in Western Australia, which sparked the Stop Black Deaths in Custody movement.