The family of a Walpiri teenager fatally shot by a Northern Territory policeman during an outback arrest will give evidence when an inquest into his death resumes.
Kumanjayi Walker died on November 9, 2019 when Constable Zachary Rolfe shot him three times in the remote community of Yuendumu, 290km northwest of Alice Springs.
Const Rolfe was acquitted at trial in March of murdering Mr Walker, re-igniting grief and anger among many members of his family and Warlpiri community.
The three-month inquest that started on Monday will explore the actions of police before and after the death.
It will also provide Mr Walker’s family and community members with an opportunity to give evidence to the coroner.
The first of those will be Aboriginal Community Police Officer Derek Williams, who was an uncle to Mr Walker.
Mr Walker’s cousin, Samara Fernandez-Brown, and community leader Warren Williams will also take the stand on Tuesday.
Ms Fernandez-Brown told the hearing during an informal address on Monday that her family had pleaded with police for information after Mr Walker was shot.
“In the dark, we waited … we got nothing,” she said.
“Kumanjayi died … I’d imagine he was in pain. He was scared and he was robbed of comfort,” she said in reference to her cousin dying behind a locked door on the floor inside Yuendumu police station.
Mr Walker had stabbed Const Rolfe in the moments before the officer shot him in the torso from close range as the pair and another officer scuffled inside a dark room in the teenager’s grandmother’s home.
He died about an hour after Const Rolfe’s second shot ripped through his spleen, lung, liver and a kidney.
The inquest will probe whether Mr Walker received adequate medical treatment before he died and why police wanted to arrest him and how his death affected his family and community.
But Const Rolfe’s lawyers have raised objections to some of the questions being asked about their client, including whether the officer provided accurate and honest information during his recruitment.
Counsel assisting the coroner Peggy Dwyer said the objections extended to the coroner hearing evidence related to racism or cultural bias in the NT police force and Const Rolfe’s history of use of force.
The hearing continues.