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OFFICIAL POLICE COMPLAINT 21/5/2013
In March this year in support of Moorook Animal shelter as their spokesperson, I had interactions with the RSPCA on their behalf, and hoped to help mediate a way forward between Moorook and the RSPCA.
Several weeks later I received emails from the chief inspector of the RSPCA a Mr. Simon Richards, saying he would not deal with me and wanted Moorook to employ a lawyer, my reply was that I was official spokesperson and that until legal action was entertained by either party, Moorook would not entertain the expense of employing a lawyer.
A few days later I received an email from Mr. Richard’s lawyers threatening legal action which related to posts on my Face Book profile, the letter addressed a post I did not write, and replies of other Face Book users, I replied that I was not involved with the statements and offered up proof.
I then received more threats from Mr. Richards Lawyers, so I place on my Face Book page a note explaining the requests of Mr. Richards, so as to avoid what I considered to be ongoing intimidation.
After publishing the note, some of Mr. Richards children started posting including threats to me, these included the words “I know what is going on exactly don’t stress to much mate it will come to u in time dad has the rite connections”
A new group then also appeared on Face Book called “Moorook shelter and Mark Aldridge rants” which included Mr. Richards children, the group took to attacking my family and Moorook shelter volunteers including photos of my deceased wife, my children and doctored quotes that were purported to have been made my myself and my wife of a horrific nature
I contacted the federal police relating to the issue on social networking group on the Friday morning to be told to contact SAPOL regarding the issue.
On Friday the 17 of May on the way back to Adelaide from attending Moorook shelter to meet the local Member of Parliament Kim Whetstone, I received threats to my life and that of my family from a blocked caller.
Later in the evening on the 17 of May, police attended my property to carry out a firearm inspection, although that did not seem to be the reason they were here, I invited them in and unlocked my cellar to show them my firearms, which included an unfired world war 2 collectors rifle, a collectors 410 shot gun and an early 1900’s antique bolt action .22 rifle.
In the same cellar in a safe bolted to the stone wall was my .22 target pistol, the only one of these firearms I used, it was for club use only for competition shooting.
The firearms and their method of storage were inspected in 2008 and late in 2012, without concern as to their storage facilities, the pistol was in a steel safe bolted to a solid stone wall, the rifles were loose in the cellar which has a solid lockable timber door, and the cellar is solid stone with no other access other than the locked entrance door.
I let the officers know that we had installed a new latest model steel safe in another location, with the intent of storing the rifles there, and that it was presently used by my wife for her bolt action .22 calibre rifle which was used as a tool for our Wildlife sanctuary and Rescue.
Under present legislation my wife cannot have access to my guns, so we had just fitted an internal chain so as to lock up the unused rifles in her safe, as being collectors guns, the damp cellar was no longer ideal storage, at all times we complied with section 30 of the Act.
The officers then took my firearms and my wife’s rifle without giving any reason; in fact we had to demand a receipt for the items taken, they made no complaint at the time regarding the method of storage.
My wife and I explained that we had done nothing to deserve this and that we were not happy about the whole situation, we received a receipt for the firearms and the officers left.
I contacted Adelaide police station looking for an answer, and they made me aware that it was standard practice to provide a reason for such activities.
I immediately placed an official complaint with the Police ombudsman on Monday morning I then phoned the firearms branch telephone number supplied by one of the officers that attended on the Friday night, he explained that he could still not provide a reason, but I would probably get my fire arms back soon, and made mention he was aware I had friends in parliament, and asked if I would be taking this matter further for which I said I don’t seem to have any other option.
On Monday night after exhausting all avenues I attended the Elizabeth police station to lodge a complaint about the website that was now causing concern for hundreds of friends and supporters and made the officers aware of the affects on my family of the sites content.
I also made mention to the officers of the police visit on Monday night and the fact that the sites organisers may have been the reason why, they again were not sure why the police had not provided a reason, and went on to say they could do nothing about the website and the threats I was receiving, I had over 100 pages of evidence and the threats from Mr. Richards children.
The next day Tuesday the 21 of May, the same officers returned to my home, while I was doing business, they made me aware they had been asked to consider pressing charges, for the storage of my firearms, which was very confusing, and at the same time saying they did not think any charges should be laid?
They then demanded I supply a DNA sample, for which I refused, I asked why, and again they refused to say, they said if I did not comply they could force me to comply, and I had customers and friends on site, which made me reluctant to endure forced application of a DNA test, so I complied.
Before the test, I was not advised of my rights under the Criminal Law (Forensic Procedures) Act 2007, and after I was read information that the Act clearly states should have been advised before the test was conducted.
I immediately looked over the legislation, which again did not allow this action by these officers, the fact they kept saying they were just minions, and did not agree with why they were here, does not diminish the fact their actions again were not backed by the law they are employed to uphold.
I have serious fears as to the actions being taken, and why they might be happening, I have no criminal history, I have a well known history in both the political arena and as a civil and animal rights campaigner, and have no idea why I am being targeted other than the threats made by the children of the RSPCA’s chief inspector.
If charges of any form are to be made against my good name, it would be just to ask what they are, and who has made them, in the absence of any charges being laid, I asked for the DNA samples to be destroyed under the Criminal Law (Forensic Procedures) Act 2007, my wife’s and my firearms to be returned to my property and an apology to be made by SAPOL.
I also demand all information that relates to the direction behind these officers actions, under the Criminal Law (Forensic Procedures) Act 2007 the officers must have complied with section 15, which means a report must exist, and should have been supplied on the day. Under the Firearms Act, the officers must follow the direction of their superiors and be acting on a substantial complaint, which again should have been supplied from the onset. Should it be found that false accusations have been made,
I insist that those who perpetrated the complaints be prosecuted for their actions.
Mark M Aldridge P O box 1073 Virginia SA 5120 [email protected] 08 82847482 / 0403379500