Handcuffed boy’s video goes viral
POLICE are refusing to comment after Mt Druitt was again thrust into the spotlight with a video of officers arresting a 12-year-old boy at Lethbridge Park posted on to social media.
But Bidwill’s Learning Ground project manager Debbie Higgison commended police for their calm composure during the incident, filmed on December 27.
“You have to commend them for how they held themselves,” Ms Higgison said.
“You know police put up with a lot and some do react, and can you blame them?
“But these officers (in the video) did well to not react.”
The video of police detaining the boy with handcuffs at Lethbridge Park was uploaded to Facebook by the boy’s angry mother, who cannot be named for legal reasons.
The post hit more than 300,000 shares before it was taken down this morning, far surpassing the reach of an unrelated Christmas rave party at Shalvey, which was shut down before it started after the invite went viral online.
The boy can be seen in the video reacting to the police officers as they take details from his mother.
But it was the conduct of Mt Druitt police the mother was critical of, slamming them for putting her son in handcuffs with one loop around both wrists.
The Standard contacted Mt Druitt senior police, who would not comment beyond confirming a boy, 12, had been given a field court attendance notice to face a children’s court on March 3, after rocks were allegedly thrown at moving vehicles.
The NSW Police media unit also refused an interview request.
“Unfortunately, we won’t be able to assist in this instance,” a spokeswoman said.
For almost 10 years, Ms Higgison has helped steer troubled young people back to school in the area.
She spoke out about the area’s “unfair” image portrayed by SBS documentary Struggle Street last year, and said she felt saddened by the Lethbridge Park video.
“Sadly, we are seeing more and more of this type of behaviour from children the same age, and even younger, just terrorising neighbourhoods in almost every suburb of Mt Druitt, and I’m sure in many other suburbs in other areas,” Ms Higgison said.
“I was absolutely horrified by the video, but I deal with this sort of thing all the time.”
She said parents needed support, but many were reluctant to accept it.
Ms Higgison said the Family Skill program would start on February 16, at the Learning Ground in Bidwill. Details: 9953 3287.
– Alison Balding
The boy captured on video.