NT sergeant tells court Zachary Rolfe is an accurate marksman trained to contain high-risk events

A Northern Territory sergeant who trained Constable Zachary Rolfe has described him in court as a senior member of a specialist response team and good marksman.

Sgt Lee Bauwens also said in the NT supreme court on Thursday that Rolfe achieved perfect scores in shooting training, and had later assisted him in some training sessions.

Bauwens was giving evidence during Rolfe’s trial for murder. Rolfe is charged with murdering Kumanjayi Walker in Yuendumu, a remote community about 300km from Alice Springs, on 9 November 2019.

The court has previously heard that Walker, a 19-year-old Warlpiri man, stabbed Rolfe while the officer was trying to arrest him. Rolfe then shot Walker three times. The murder charge relates to the second two shots, which the prosecution alleges were fired at close range while Walker was on the ground under the control of another officer, Adam Eberl.

Rolfe has pleaded not guilty and defends his actions on the basis they were justified in light of the risk Walker posed to him and Eberl. The defence also disputes that Walker was under control at the time of the shots.

On Wednesday, Bauwens gave evidence that he performed Rolfe’s induction training when he joined the immediate response team (IRT) in either late 2017 or early 2018.

The court heard the team, which Bauwens led and helped create, is a squad of general duties officers who receive additional training that enables them to be deployed to support other police or cordon and contain high-risk events until specialist officers arrive.

In continuing his evidence on Thursday, Bauwens described Rolfe as a senior member of the IRT. He said that a training record tendered in evidence to the court had shown Rolfe hit 15 out of 15 targets while using a primary weapon, which Bauwens said would have been an AR-15 rifle, and all six targets using his secondary weapon, a Glock semi-automatic handgun.

Bauwens was asked extensive questions by prosecutor Philip Strickland SC about the defensive tactics and…

Read full story at the guardian.com

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