Police Duty to Rescue

Oct 2013
12,952
Europix
This should be simple. You claimed that Australia has a law stating police must rescue. To prove, you would need to provide the law itself, quotes of the exact wording, plus any other case law pertaining to it since

NT police officer gaoled for failing to render assistance

Based on:

"155 FAILURE TO RESCUE, PROVIDE HELP, &C.

Any person who, being able to provide rescue, resuscitation, medical treatment, first aid or succour of any kind to a person urgently in need of it and whose life may be endangered if it is not provided, callously fails to do so is guilty of an offence and is liable to imprisonment for 7 years.

155A ASSAULT, OBSTRUCTION ETC. OF PERSONS PROVIDING RESCUE, MEDICAL TREATMENT OR OTHER AID

(1) A person who unlawfully assaults, obstructs or hinders another person:

(a) who is providing rescue, resuscitation, medical treatment, first aid or succour of any kind to a third person;

(b) who is taking action to prevent injury or further injury to a third person who is in immediate risk of injury or further injury; or

(c) who is taking action to prevent damage or further damage to property that is in immediate risk of damage or further damage,

is guilty of an offence and is liable to imprisonment for 5 years.

(2) If the person thereby endangers the life of or causes harm to the third person, the person is liable to imprisonment for 7 years."

(source: Criminal Code of the Northern Territory of Australia
CRIMINAL CODE ACT - SCHEDULE 1)
 
Last edited:
Jul 2016
7,758
USA
NT police officer gaoled for failing to render assistance

Based on:

"155 FAILURE TO RESCUE, PROVIDE HELP, &C.

Any person who, being able to provide rescue, resuscitation, medical treatment, first aid or succour of any kind to a person urgently in need of it and whose life may be endangered if it is not provided, callously fails to do so is guilty of an offence and is liable to imprisonment for 7 years.

155A ASSAULT, OBSTRUCTION ETC. OF PERSONS PROVIDING RESCUE, MEDICAL TREATMENT OR OTHER AID

(1) A person who unlawfully assaults, obstructs or hinders another person:

(a) who is providing rescue, resuscitation, medical treatment, first aid or succour of any kind to a third person;

(b) who is taking action to prevent injury or further injury to a third person who is in immediate risk of injury or further injury; or

(c) who is taking action to prevent damage or further damage to property that is in immediate risk of damage or further damage,

is guilty of an offence and is liable to imprisonment for 5 years.

(2) If the person thereby endangers the life of or causes harm to the third person, the person is liable to imprisonment for 7 years."

(source: Criminal Code of the Northern Territory of Australia
CRIMINAL CODE ACT - SCHEDULE 1)

" 57 PROTECTION OF GOOD SAMARITANS

(1) A good samaritan does not incur any personal civil liability in respect of any act or omission done or made by the good samaritan in an emergency when assisting a person who is apparently injured or at risk of being injured.

(2) This section does not affect the vicarious liability of any other person for the acts or omissions of the good samaritan.

(source: CIVIL LIABILITY ACT 2002 - SECT 57 CIVIL LIABILITY ACT 2002 - SECT 57 Protection of good samaritans)
That's a state law, not federal/national. But yep, that clearly spells out criminal liability for failing in duty to rescue.

Something like that would never fly in the US, any court would toss that out as grossly un-Constitutional, but Australia is a different land, different ideas. I wonder if the High Court of Australia is okay with it...

I think the officer in question could have challenged the legality of the law instead of pleading guilty to numerous counts (in exchange for a much shorter sentence). Had he challenged, he'd likely have been found guilty initially but his appeal had the potential of going to the High Court of Australia where previous rulings that police owed no duty to rescue unless a special relationship was proven, might have not only reversed his sentence but gotten the law stricken. However, that's a challenging gamble, it means he'd be in prison the entirety of the appeal, and he could very well lose the appeal, or the higher courts not bothering to even rule on it (they only take very limited numbers of cases).
 
Oct 2013
12,952
Europix
That's a state law, not federal/national. But yep, that clearly spells out criminal liability for failing in duty to rescue.

Something like that would never fly in the US, any court would toss that out as grossly un-Constitutional, but Australia is a different land, different ideas. I wonder if the High Court of Australia is okay with it...

I think the officer in question could have challenged the legality of the law instead of pleading guilty to numerous counts (in exchange for a much shorter sentence). Had he challenged, he'd likely have been found guilty initially but his appeal had the potential of going to the High Court of Australia where previous rulings that police owed no duty to rescue unless a special relationship was proven, might have not only reversed his sentence but gotten the law stricken. However, that's a challenging gamble, it means he'd be in prison the entirety of the appeal, and he could very well lose the appeal, or the higher courts not bothering to even rule on it (they only take very limited numbers of cases).
What would have happened if the cop would have challenged is something I don't know, and I can't afford to have any opinion as is way out of my knowledge on the matter.

What I am tempted to think is that:

1. It's a general law, that applies to all citizens, not specifically to cathegories (police officers, womens, blacks, whatever). And I think that makes a difference.

2. The law I quoted has also a "check", that in my (I admit: totally unqualified) opinion also makes a difference:

" 57 PROTECTION OF GOOD SAMARITANS

(1) A good samaritan does not incur any personal civil liability in respect of any act or omission done or made by the good samaritan in an emergency when assisting a person who is apparently injured or at risk of being injured.

(2) This section does not affect the vicarious liability of any other person for the acts or omissions of the good samaritan.

(source: CIVIL LIABILITY ACT 2002 - SECT 57 CIVIL LIABILITY ACT 2002 - SECT 57 Protection of good samaritans)

I have the impression the conjunction of no 1 & 2 is eliminating a lot of juridical "blur" and avoids "strange" contradictions.

But ok, I might be wrong in my interpretation.
 

Belgarion

Ad Honorem
Jul 2011
6,526
Australia
I'm sorry, but the judges' findings in both cases is near identical to the wording of Warren v DC, even using the "special relationship" clause. And of course this is about liability, as its about whether or not individuals can sue for damages over claims of lack of service, its not criminal.

This should be simple. You claimed that Australia has a law stating police must rescue. To prove, you would need to provide the law itself, quotes of the exact wording, plus any other case law pertaining to it since.
Since you agree the examples you provided are decisions on liability, why do you claim they are evidence that police do not have to assist?
 

Ichon

Ad Honorem
Mar 2013
3,453
"Professional fault" is a civil fault, trialed through a civil procedure called "disciplinary procedure" (in French right system).

As for the rest, thank You for Your time. But I wasn't asking about the constitutional rights, slaves, and the rest.
I think the point is that making a law to 'compel' police officers to intervene does not leave to their own judgement. Almost always if a police officer observes a violent crime going down near them they will intervene. There are many situations such as riots, evacuations, investigations, shootings, etc where an ongoing crime or injured person is ignored due to a 'greater' potential community threat and any law compelling intervention would be widely open to interpretation and litigation costing taxpayers lots of money.

The principal is not that different than triage where it is not necessarily the most injured person who medical personnel attend to but the people with the greatest wounds who are likely to be saved from immediate intervention. Cost/benefit is often a judgement call based on a combination of training, assessment, context, and time.
 
Likes: bboomer

Belgarion

Ad Honorem
Jul 2011
6,526
Australia
Since you agree the examples you provided are decisions on liability, why do you claim they are evidence that police do not have to assist?
Further to the above, I will refer you the NSW Police Act 1990, part 2 section 6, and the NSW State Emergency and Rescue Management Act, Part 1 para. 4.
 
Oct 2013
12,952
Europix
What the heck is this boring,useless thread ?

I resurrected this hot thread ''The Battle of Ain Jalut, 1260''
All Mongol-Fan girls could came here and explain ''Muh Hulagu take most of his army,thats why mamluks won'' or something like that.
Listen, there's no "duty to follow threads" in Historum law.

If something is boring You, You don't risk any legal pursuits, so, keep walking.
 

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