Courtney Topic’s final moments before police shooting revealed in footage



March 22, 2018 21:42:21

The last moments of Courtney Topic’s life before she was shot and killed by police in 2015 are seen up close in recently released footage.

The 22-year-old woman is shown wielding a kitchen knife in her left hand outside of a Hungry Jacks in Hoxton Park, while a police officer repeatedly commands her to “put the knife down”.

The footage, released by the NSW Coroner’s Court at an inquest yesterday, was recorded by a taser held by one of three officers who confronted Ms Topic in February 2015.

A second video filmed by a witness showed Ms Topic running at the three police officers, before she was shot by one.

Ms Topic’s parents, Leesa and Ron, are questioning the police response that day, and want people to know why their daughter died in such a violent way.

‘She was distressed’

Ms Topic suffered from mental health issues and had been diagnosed with Aspergers, a form of autism.

A police radio recording also details the moment officers were alerted about a woman wandering the streets in the area holding a knife.

“Observed a female talking to herself. Apparently she hit herself in the head with one hand, and in the other hand she was in possession of a knife.

“She was distressed. Informant’s a bit worried she might be going to hurt herself.”

Two minutes later another message went out.

“Observed a female talking to herself and she also held a knife in one hand.”

12 minutes later, another message.

“Your female is now near Hungry Jacks….she’s still got that large kitchen knife, she’s waving it around.”

A minute later, one of the first three officers on the scene asks for information.

“Just about to go off at Hungry Jacks, can you brief me what’s going on?” he asked.

“There’s been a few reports of this 16- to 17-year-old wandering around with a large kitchen knife. This time she’s pointing it at her stomach and there’s people concerned about self-harm.”

A minute later Ms Topic was shot dead.

“Please call ambulance ASAP,” the message went out on the radio.

“Urgent, she’s been shot.”

The Glebe Coroner’s Court is also investigating whether the police should respond differently if a person shows signs of a mental health disorder.

The inquest continues.






First posted

March 22, 2018 21:03:14

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