EXCLUSIVE: “Unnecessary” sedation blamed for police-involved death

By Sarah Smit

A sedative given to a handcuffed man is being blamed for the death of Roderick Narrier late last month.

The 39-year-old Kewdale man died in Royal Perth Hospital 3 days after being sedated by paramedics at the direction of police, says Mervyn Eades, CEO of Ngalla Maya Aboriginal Corporation.

“They got the paramedics to give him an injection to sedate him and slow his erratic behaviour down, and since they gave him that injection, Roderick stopped breathing”, says Mr. Eades.

“Who are the police or anyone outside the medical profession to prescribe him something, not knowing any of the conditions he may have had?”

Police were called to a home in Kewdale in the early hours of Sunday the 27th of October to respond to a domestic violence incident.

In a statement a WA police spokesperson said police subdued Mr. Narrier before calling St John Ambulance.

“The man was behaving erratically and aggressively. Police managed to restrain him, and due to concerns surrounding his behaviour, SJA was then contacted to attend.”

“While being treated by SJA officers, the man lost consciousness. Attending police and SJA officers performed CPR, and after being stabilised, he was conveyed to Royal Perth Hospital.”

“He later died in hospital on 30 October 2019.”

Mr. Eades says that the sedative he believes caused Roderick’s death was unnecessary to safely restrain him.

“But the big thing is, why did they give him that injection when they already had him subdued, with handcuffs on and controllable?

“Four police officers and him, just weighing just over 70 kilos- they could have handled him without giving him an injection.”

WA Police say that the circumstances leading to the man’s death will be investigated the WA Police Internal Affairs Unitand the Coroner.


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