dinsdag, december 13, 2016

Vader, moeder knekelhuis; no ­responsible person that would’ve said, ‘That’s enough, we need to get him out of that ­restraint chair, he has been in there for too long’.

My scariest moment was being hooded and strapped to chair: Voller

The Australian


Dylan Voller has described the time he was hooded and strapped to a restraint chair as one of the scariest moments of his life, ­recounting himself panicking, feeling dizzy and vomiting while a prison guard nearby “taunted” him and manipulated video ­footage.
Giving evidence to the royal commission into child detention in the Northern Territory yest­erday, Voller said: “They could’ve left me in there a lot longer and there’s no one in there, no ­responsible person that would’ve said, ‘That’s enough, we need to get him out of that ­restraint chair, he has been in there for too long’.
“My mouth was getting dry, getting dizzy again; I was getting dehydrated.
“I was getting to the point where I thought they were going to leave me there all night to the next day. That’s when I gave up asking to be let out of it.”
The teenager’s troubled life is at the centre of the royal commission after footage of him inside Darwin’s Don Dale Youth ­Detention Centre was shown on national television this year.
Voller has a lengthy rap sheet featuring multiple convictions for assault, aggravated ­assault and damage to property. He was jailed in 2014 over a botched gang robbery in which a young man was bashed unconscious. Voller also tried to run over a police officer. He has since been ­denied parole twice.
At the start of his evidence yesterday Voller tendered his criminal record to the commission and described it as “humiliating”. He also said he regretted regularly spitting on prison officers, adding that it had been a ­defence mechanism at times when he felt threatened.

Voller also told of the night in 2014 when he and other boys were teargassed while locked in isolation cells at Don Dale. “I laid on my guts with my hands behind me so it was clear that if something was happening it was clear that I wasn’t resisting … I wanted to die because my heart was ­racing, because of the teargas, my eyes were burning. I couldn’t hardly see properly,” he said.
He revealed he was the last boy removed from his cell during the incident because he had stuffed toilet paper in the lock to make it harder for guards to get in. “When I put the toilet paper in the lock, I thought they were going to let the dog in,” he said. “I didn’t think we would get teargassed ­because they’re not allowed to have teargas at Don Dale.”
He also said it was commonplace for guards to manipulate video footage by turning handheld cameras on and off so that only incidents where detainees were misbehaving were recorded. Those where guards provoked children were left out.

Voller, now 19, was stoic throughout his testimony, save for one point when he recalled how a detention centre worker had told him his family no longer cared about him.
It emerged yesterday that ­Voller had spent 90 days of one 210-day stint in youth detention between 2012 and 2013 locked in an isolation cell. Not long after he went on an ice-fuelled crime binge that landed him back inside.

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