Perth police dog shooting: lawyer of Biggie’s owners disappointed at CCC decision


The Wharrams’ dog Biggie was shot last year.
The Wharrams’ dog Biggie was shot last year.

HHG Legal Group’s Nicole Young, representing Pat and Alena Wharram, forwarded the matter to the CCC in the belief police had lied to the owners about the circumstances surrounding the dog’s shooting in November.

An officer shot the dog after the family pet escaped from the Wharrams’ home.

The concluding statement of Ms Young’s submission to the CCC described the “widespread public interest” in the matter.

“We suggest that this entire story has significantly eroded public confidence in the honesty, integrity and transparency of the police force,” it read.

“We hope that an independent investigation of the matter may assist to restore that confidence.”

The complainants were also angered by a police internal investigation into the incident that they believed was “improper” and “not transparent”.

Among a number of accusations of dishonesty, Ms Young alleged the officer had lied about Biggie attacking him before he shot the animal on a suburban street.

Video footage later released showed the dog had not attacked.

But City of Joondalup officers believed Biggie had attacked another dog that day and fined Mr Wharram over the matter.

The CCC response remains confidential, but Ms Young gave a summary.

“In essence it said there was no suspicion of serious misconduct by any public officer and that just because we may disagree with an officer’s actions it doesn’t make those actions unlawful or serious misconduct,” she said.

“We were particularly disappointed, as our letter to the CCC outlined numerous and detailed complaints about various officers.

“The CCC response we received did not address any of our specific concerns and was what can be best described as a very limited response.”

The officer involved has reportedly since quit the force after he was found to have had illicit drugs in his system in a matter separate to the dog shooting.

The Times offered police the chance to comment on the CCC’s decision in their favour, but they declined.

Protesters of the dog’s shooting remain active on Facebook page “Justice for Biggie”.

Ms Young recently posted on the page encouraging supporters to write to Police Minister Liza Harvey for tighter gun restrictions on police.