Qld police 'reviewing' journalist incident

By Jamie Mckinnell

Senior Queensland police are reviewing the behaviour of two officers who detained and swore at an ABC journalist while accusing him of being "off his chops" on drugs.

Brisbane police reporter Josh Bavas, who claimed he simply had a cold, recorded mobile phone footage of the incident at a Bunnings store in Oxley, in Brisbane's southwest, on Saturday.

"Mate, the fact that you've got pinpoint eyes and you're looking directly into the sun and they're not dilating due to the sunlight, I believe you to be under the influence of a dangerous drug," one officer says.

"For the moment I'm going to detain you for the purposes of a search."

When Bavas questioned the move, the officer, who later gave his name as Senior Constable Richard Power, demanded identification.

"It's in the car," Bavas replied.

Sen Const Power then turned to a colleague.

"He's off his chops on something," he said, which Bavas denied.

The second police officer replies: "Oh f***ing mate, if we hadn't hung on to you mate you'd float off into f***ing outer space."

The first officer alerts his colleague to recordings taking place.

"Oh, sorry," the second says.

Bavas posted the 30-second video to Twitter.

"I have a cold," he wrote. "Unbelievable."

The reporter claimed he was stopped because he was waiting in the car park near a vehicle containing a group of people who were of Aboriginal appearance.

A Queensland Police Service (QPS) spokesman said they were aware of the footage.

"In keeping with our commitment to high standards of behaviour, transparency and accountability, senior officers have reviewed the footage and are examining the behaviour of the police involved," they said in a statement.

"The man was not in possession of dangerous drugs and was released without further action taken."

The QPS Standard of Practice calls for officers to "treat everyone fairly and with respect".

Members are also urged to act with integrity and model professional behaviour.

The QPS spokesman did not respond to a question of whether the officers' conduct was in accordance with the document.

ABC news director Gaven Morris later took to Twitter to address those concerned about Bavas.

"Rest assured he is fine - apart from his cold - and is getting on with his Saturday," he said.