Water Week

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“Why didn’t they knock on the door?” asks mother of man police shot dead during raid on family home in Melbourne in 2005

Posted by waterweek on 4 October 2007

The mother of a man police shot dead during a raid on his family’s Brooklyn (Victoria) home in 2005 has demanded to know why officers forced their way into her house, reported The Age (22/9/2007, p.14). Why not knock?: “Why didn’t they come and knock on the door?” Fatma Chaouk asked through an Arabic interpreter in the Melbourne Coroners Court on 21 September. “Why did the police make me wear black for the rest of my life, grieving for my son?” she asked the coroner investigating her son Mohamed’s death. Her husband, Machhour, asked why police shot his son in the chest. “Why didn’t they shoot him in his legs or somewhere where he didn’t die?” Mr and Mrs Chaouks’ questions came after other family members tendered statements to the court, describing the terror of waking up to Special Operations Group police raiding their home at dawn on 5 April, 2005.

Coroner finding: One of the officers – known only as Operative 52 – shot Mohamed Chaouk in the chest and abdomen after the 31-year-old allegedly struck his wrist with a blunt samurai sword during the raid. Coroner Paresa Spanos said she understood the Chaouk family’s concerns and would take them into account while making a finding on his death. She will deliver her finding later this year.

The Age, 22/9/2007, p. 14

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