You are on page 1of 4

Sarah Goodall, Investigator

Brooking
Independent Police Conduct Authority
29-075
PO Box 25221
Wellington 6146

Roger
P.O.Box
Ngaio
Wellington

2 December, 2014

Police investigation into the death of Jai Davis
Dear Ms Goodall
Thank you for your letter dated 6 November in which you indicate that "the
Authority agrees with the decisions of police outlined in a letter of 11 July 2014
(from Inspector Geoffrey Jago) in relation to the three areas of complaint initially
raised. The Authority is also satisfied that the criminal investigation into Mr
Davis death subsequently undertaken was appropriate and thorough…. The
Authority has however requested of police that it be informed if any information
comes to hand, through the inquest, that suggests this decision should be
changed."
The letter which I have from Inspector Jago is dated 4 July 2014. In the first four
pages, he discusses ‘issue one’ concerning whether or not “the police were
aware that Mr Davis was suspected of internally concealing drugs when they
took him to OCF - but did nothing to ensure his safety.”
On page 2, Inspector Jago says that on Wednesday 9 February, a Corrections
officer (named at the inquest as Corrections Intelligence officer, Neil JonesSexton) sent two e-mails to the police. The first was at 9:38 am; the second was
sent at 4 p.m. Inspector Jago says that the sergeant to whom the second e-mail
was sent (named at the inquest as Detective Sergeant Hedges) finished duty at 2
p.m. and so did not read the e-mail until he returned on 22nd of February.
Inspector Jago writes that apart from these two e-mails on 8 February, "No
further information was provided" (to police by Corrections). However,
testimony at the inquest provided by Corrections intelligence officer, Neil JonesSexton and police intelligence officer Rennae Flockton, completely contradicts
this.
Testimony of Neil Jones-Sexton
In his statement to the police, Mr Jones-Sexton said that once he became
aware of the nature of the recorded phone calls to Jai Davis:
"I felt the information was of such importance that police needed to know
immediately and consequently phoned the Dunedin Police." (Para 25) "I did

speak to personal at the Dunedin Police regarding this matter before DAVIS was
arrested." (Para 26) "While I do not recall who exactly I spoke to, at some stage
I spoke to Sergeant RITCHIE, Detective Sergeant HEDGES, Detective Trevor
THOMPSON and Police Liaison Officer Judy POWELL and possibly other Police
Intel staff over the relevant time periods.” (Para 27) "I phoned and spoke to
Detective Sergeant HEDGES, before sending him the same PTMS disclosure via
email that I had sent on 9 February 2011.” (Para 41)
In paragraph 22 of his written statement to the coroner, Mr Jones-Sexton lists
everyone that he sent the e-mail disclosure to on Wednesday, 9 February (about
the recorded phone calls to Mr Davis). There are eight names on the list
including Sgt Tony Ritchie of the Dunedin police and Operations Intelligence
Otago Southland area.
In paragraph 28 of his written statement to the coroner, Mr Jones-Sexton said: "I
phoned and spoke to Detective Sgt Hedges, before sending him the same PTMS
disclosure by e-mail that I had sent on 9 February, 2011"
In his verbal testimony at the inquest, Mr Jones-Sexton said he was in contact
with the police on a daily basis and that there was "a lot of communication with
police prior to Davis going into prison". He said he spoke to five or six different
police personnel about it. He said that on 9 February, after sending the e-mail at
4 p.m. he phoned the police to let them know he had e-mailed the disclosure. He
said repeatedly that he was ‘100% certain’ that he passed on the information
prior to formal disclosure by e-mail.
He said he also conveyed the information to police escort staff and told the
police to keep Dylan Hill away from Jai Davis when they went to court to prevent
Davis from giving Mr Hill the drugs. He said he regarded the information as so
important that he told as many police as possible and that he "put tentacles out
as far as I could get them". He said "my intention was to ensure that as many
persons (police) as possible got the information."
Testimony of Rennae Flockton
At the inquest, Police intelligence officer Rennae Flockton confirmed everything
that Mr Jones- Sexton said. She said there were six or seven staff in the
Intelligence Office; she said they worked in an open-plan office and they all knew
that Davis was likely to be bringing in drugs when he turned himself in at the
Dunedin police station to be arrested on Thursday 10 February. She said that
when Davis turned himself in on Thursday, she and some others from the
intelligence office went down to look at Mr Davis through the mirrored glass
where they speculated about how he might be concealing the drugs.
This was entirely consistent with her
Flockton said:

statement to the police, in which Ms

"The possibility of DAVIS coming into the watchhouse to hand himself in had
been discussed in the Intelligence office during the week as we had received
information from the prison indicating this was going to happen." (Para 7) "I was
also aware that DAVIS may possibly have drugs on him as the information we
had received from prison indicated that he was handing himself in, also made
reference to the fact that DAVIS would be bringing in drugs to give to other MM
gang members at OCF. " (Para 9) "The Intelligence office was informed that Jai
DAVIS was down at the front counter as they needed to get a Constable to go
down and arrest him. I believe he had a warrant for his arrest. “(Para 10) “Myself
and other Intel staff members – I do not recall who – went down to the
Watchhouse to look at DAVIS through the mirrored glass.” (Para 11) "We were
commenting as to “how” he may have the drugs hidden on him to take down to
OCF.” (Para 12)
Conclusion
1) There’s absolutely no doubt the police knew Davis was likely to be
carrying drugs when he turned himself in. They held him in the police
cells overnight, took him to court next day and had him in custody for
about 24 hours before they took him out to OCF. In such situations,
section 13 of the Misuse of Drugs Amendment Act requires the police to
call a doctor to conduct an examination and possibly an x-ray. If they had
done so, they could have saved Davis’ life.
2) At the inquest Sergeant Hedges claimed that he never read the e-mail he
received at 9.38 a.m. from Neil Jones-Sexton and said there was no other
communication from him. In other words, he appears to have lied when he
told the coroner that prior to going on leave, he was unaware that Davis
was about to turn himself in with internally concealed drugs.
He also talked about how passionate Mr Jones-Sexton was at his job and
said "he is good at what he does". While denying that Jones-Sexton had
personally called him, he gave the distinct impression that, because of his
passion for the job, Mr Jones-Sexton was highly likely to have made phone
calls to police in addition to sending e-mails. Sgt Hedges was clearly trying
to avoid any personal responsibility the police may have in Davis’ death.
One could make the case that by his denials, Sgt Hedges has conspired to
pervert the course of Justice.
3) The inquest seems likely to finish tomorrow. It will be interesting to see
whether the police bring the information provided at the inquest by Neil
Jones-Sexton and Rennae Flockton to the attention of the IPCA. If they
don't, I would argue that would constitute further evidence of an attempt
to pervert the course of Justice.
4) Subsequently, Inspector Jago appears to have spoken to Sgt Hedges and
taken his word for what happened (that were only two emails and no other
communication). It is unclear whether Inspector Jago has conspired with

Sgt Hedges to pervert the course of Justice or whether, by failing to
interview Neil Jones Sexton or Rennae Flockton, his investigation was
fundamentally superficial.
5) Mr Davis died primarily because nobody called a doctor. By failing to call a
doctor for Mr Davis, the police are just as culpable in his death as acting
prison manager, Ann Matenga, who signed a document stating that she
would call the prison doctor (but didn't); and just as culpable as the half a
dozen nurses who saw Mr Davis over the weekend but never called the
doctor. In my opinion, Police and Corrections staff failed to provide the
necessaries for life and potentially breached Section 151 of the Crimes
act.
I request that the IPCA re-examine the police investigation into the death of Jai
Davis with particular attention to what actions the police should have taken in
the 24 hours they had him in their custody before taking him out to the Otago
prison.
Roger Brooking