Yuendumu home now a 'memory house' for Kumanjayi Walker
The home where Kumanjayi Walker was fatally shot by police is now a "memory house" out of respect for the Indigenous teenager, the inquest into his death has been told.
At the request of the 19-year-old's family, the property in Yuendumu, northwest of Alice Springs, has been removed from the Northern Territory government's replacement and refurbishment program for public housing.
Territory Families, Housing and Communities deputy chief executive Brent Warren said talks were underway with the current tenants about finding them alternative accommodation.
"It's my understanding that the request received was to stop treating that property as public housing, so that it could be used as a memorial for the sad death," Mr Warren said.
But he said the department was committed to continuing to make repairs and maintain the house as necessary.
"We need to clarify whether it's going to be used as a home or whether it's going to be used as a place to visit and memorialised," he said.
"Because that will determine what kind of maintenance we do there."
Mr Walker was fatally shot by Constable Zachary Rolfe during a bungled outback arrest in Yuendumu in November 2019.
He died while receiving first aid treatment at the town's police station.
The inquiry into his death was previously told that a special police unit, brought in from Alice Springs to detain the teenager, had gone to the house earlier than originally planned.
After the shooting, Const Rolfe was charged with Mr Walker's murder but was acquitted after a Supreme Court trial.
The police officer's further participation in the inquest hinges on the outcome of his appeal against an NT Supreme Court ruling that he could be compelled to answer questions.
His appearance at future hearings has been further complicated by his recent decision to leave Australia after penning an open letter critical of the inquest and the NT police.
In the letter, Const Rolfe said the NT Police Force had wasted millions of dollars on disciplining him rather than giving him a medal.
"Despite this, the coronial focus is still on me rather than on areas that could improve the circumstances of the NT," he wrote.
He also questioned the airing of racist texts he had both sent and received, and while apologising for sending any offending messages, he argued they were cherrypicked from thousands extracted from his phone.
In other evidence to the inquest on Friday, former NT Aboriginal community police officer Baru Pascoe spoke about the importance of arresting Indigenous people in a culturally appropriate way.
He related one experience where an armed man was taken into custody, but in such a way that he readily complied.
"We tried the culturally appropriate way for him to surrender," Mr Pascoe said.
"Cultural communication was the best thing I could use without an officer using a weapon against him."
Mr Pascoe said in such circumstances "the most powerful weapon is your tongue".
Former WA Indigenous police officer Lindsay Greatorex spoke out against the use of dogs in arrests, describing it as inhumane.
"I'm not for it," he said.
A police dog was deployed in the arrest of Mr Walker.
The inquest will resume later this year.