Cop's career in tatters after conviction

Ed Jackson
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Cop's career in tatters after conviction

Queensland policeman Chris Hurley has been fined after being found guilty of assault in 2013.

The career of high profile police officer Chris Hurley is in tatters after he was convicted of assault on Friday.

Senior Sergeant Hurley was fined $900 and had convictions recorded at Southport Magistrates Court after being found guilty of assaulting Luke Cole during a roadside arrest in 2013.

Magistrate Chris Callaghan found Sen Sgt Hurley had unlawfully grabbed Mr Cole's throat during the incident at Robina Parkway in November 2013.

His decision to then produce his Taser during the incident was also deemed unlawful.

The court heard Hurley, who was acquitted of the manslaughter of Palm Island man Cameron Doomadgee in 2007, had been suffering from undiagnosed post-traumatic stress disorder at the time of the assault.

Hurley's barrister Stephen Zillman told the court his client's mental health had been in decline due to the publicity and notoriety he'd been forced to deal with after Mr Doomadgee's death.

His marriage had broken down earlier in 2013 and after being suspended without pay earlier this year, Hurley was now sleeping on his parents' floor and unable to obtain employment or social security benefits.

Mr Callaghan said despite the recording of convictions being likely to hinder Hurley's future employment prospects, the message needed to be sent that police cannot abuse their power.

"My view is police officers have to be deterred on behaving in the way you behaved on that day," he told the court.

Mr Cole welcomed the verdict and said it would give the public confidence that police would be held accountable for their actions.

"We can show our son now that not all these guys are bad," he said outside court.

Queensland Police Union president Ian Leavers slammed the Queensland Police Service for failing to support Hurley.

He said Hurley would never get a "fair go" and had been hung out to dry by his bosses despite 29 years of service.

"Police are in fear. Once you admit you have an issue or a psychological injury, you are banished and you're banished for a long time," Mr Leavers said outside court.

"Those right from the commissioner down need to put into practice what they are speaking. They say 'we support those with mental health and psychological injuries' ... that is complete and utter rubbish."

Mr Leavers said the union would explore its legal options in terms of possibly appealing Hurley's sentence.