General information and updates concerning the Inquest will be posted here.
Friday, 12 June 2020
The Bourke Street Inquest concluded on 12 June 2020 after two days of oral submissions from interested parties. Coroner Hawkins is expected to hand down her findings later this year.
NEW DATES SET FOR ORAL SUBMISSIONS
Wednesday, 20 May 2020
Coroner Hawkins will now hear oral submissions on Thursday 11 June and Friday 12 June 2020. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, parties to the hearing will attend remotely.
Wednesday, 4 March 2020
Oral evidence in the inquest into the 2017 Bourke Street event concluded on Wednesday 26 February 2020. Coroner Hawkins has heard evidence from 50 witnesses over 31 sitting days. Coroner Hawkins has also heard statements from the families of Matthew Poh Chuan Si, Thalia Hakin, Yosuke Kanno, Jess Mudie, Zachary Matthew Bryant and Bhavita Patel.
Coroner Hawkins has set a timetable for the provision of written submissions by Counsel Assisting and the interested parties. Oral submissions will be heard on Monday 25 May 2020.
Monday, 17 February 2020
The inquest into the 2017 Bourke Street event resumed on Monday 17 February 2020. Coroner Hawkins will hear evidence from a further nine witnesses including members of Victoria Police Command and the Deputy Secretary of the Department of Justice and Community Safety.
Coroner Hawkins has invited the families of Matthew Poh Chuan Si, Thalia Hakin, Yosuke Kanno, Jess Mudie, Zachary Matthew Bryant and Bhavita Patel to address the court at the conclusion of the evidence.
INQUEST ADJOURNED TO FEBRUARY 2020
Thursday, 2 January 2019
Coroner Hawkins has heard evidence from 41 witnesses in relation to the bail hearing of the offender conducted on 14 January 2017 and the events of the following week and on 20 January 2017.
The inquest was adjourned on 18 December 2019. The inquest will resume on Monday, 17 February 2020 to hear evidence from a further 11 witnesses. At the conclusion of oral evidence, family members will be invited to make a statement or address the court on any issue related to the scope of the inquest.
INQUEST HAS HEARD EVIDENCE ON EVENTS LEADING UP TO 20 JANUARY 2017
Monday, 2 December 2019
Beginning on Tuesday, 20 November 2019, Coroner Jacqui Hawkins heard evidence from witnesses who were involved in the bail hearing of the offender conducted on 14 January 2017 as well as events of the following week.
Coroner Hawkins issued a proceeding suppression order in relation to the name and other identifying features of a witness. For more details, please refer to the redacted proceeding suppression order available on the Court's website.
The Court has commenced hearing evidence from Victoria Police members involved in the events of 20 January 2017.
Monday, 19 November 2019
Victorian Coroner Jacqui Hawkins commenced hearing the inquest into the 2017 Bourke Street event. Her counsel assisting, Stephen O'Meara QC, made an opening statement and the families of the deceased were invited to speak.
Hearings will continue until 20 December 2019, at which time the inquest will adjourn until resuming on 17 February 2020.
ADDITIONAL HEARING DATES FOR BOURKE STREET INQUEST
Wednesday 30 October 2019
Victorian Coroner Jacqui Hawkins has confirmed additional sitting dates in 2020 for the inquest into the 2017 Bourke Street event, following changes to the scope of the investigation.
On 23 August 2019, Her Honour made a ruling to broaden the scope of the inquest to include the co-ordination and effectiveness of Victoria Police’s response to the events on 20 January 2017 up until the offender’s arrest.
Prior to this, the inquest scope ended at the time the offender entered the city at the intersection of Swanston Street and Flinders Street.
The expansion of the scope means approximately ten additional witnesses will need to be called at the inquest.
Having confirmed the additional dates with all interested parties, the inquest schedule is:
- Monday 18 November 2019 – inquest commences
- Friday 20 December 2019 – inquest adjourns
- Monday 17 February 2020 – inquest resumes
- Wednesday 4 March 2020 – inquest concludes
The inquest will commence at 11.00am on Monday 18 November 2019 in Court 1 at the Coroners Court, 65 Kavanagh Street, Southbank.
During the inquest the Court will generally sit 10.00am to 1.00pm and 2.00pm to 4.30pm, Monday to Friday.
FINAL DIRECTIONS HEARING PRIOR TO INQUEST HELD
Friday 18 October 2019
On 18 October 2019, Victorian Coroner Jacqui Hawkins held a final directions hearing prior to the commencement of the inquest.
Coroner Hawkins ordered that the Chief Commissioner of Police is to make any public interest immunity or suppression order application in respect of specified material by 4.00pm on Tuesday 22 October 2019. Any affidavits or written submissions in response to the application(s) by any interested party or the media are to be filed by 4.00pm on Thursday 31 October 2019. Coroner Hawkins will then determine any application on the papers as soon as practicable prior to the commencement of the inquest.
The inquest will commence at 11.00am on Monday 18 November 2019 in Court 1 at the Coroners Court, 65 Kavanagh Street, Southbank, Victoria, 3006. The inquest is scheduled to be held from Monday 18 November 2019 to Friday 20 December 2019. The inquest will adjourn and resume on Monday 17 February 2020 and continue until Wednesday 4 March 2020.
FURTHER INQUEST DATES PLANNED WITH NEW WITNESSES
Thursday 10 October 2019
On 23 August 2019, Victorian Coroner Jacqui Hawkins made a ruling that the scope of the inquest be amended to include the co-ordination and effectiveness of the Victorian Police response to the events on 20 January 2017 from the time the offender entered the Melbourne CBD until his arrest.
Due to this, around ten additional witnesses have now been identified to be called at the inquest. The majority of these witnesses are current or former Victoria Police members. The inquest will still adjourn on 20 December 2019, but inquest will resume for new dates in early 2020 to hear these new witnesses. The exact dates have yet to be determined.
By another ruling made on 23 August 2019, Coroner Hawkins dismissed an application by the Chief Commissioner of Police for a proceeding suppression order over material including the Victoria Police Operation Titan Critical Incident Review and material pertaining to Victoria Police’s current pursuit policy. Coroner Hawkins also ordered that the identities of Special Operations Group and State Surveillance Unit members be referred to in the inquest by pseudonyms.
A directions hearing will be held on 18 October 2019 to address final issues before the commencement of the inquest.
SCHEDULE FOR BOURKE STREET INQUEST
Thursday 18 April 2019
Following a directions hearing on Tuesday 2 April 2019, Victorian Coroner Jacqui Hawkins has confirmed the following hearing dates for the inquest into the 2017 Bourke Street event:
- Wednesday 14 August 2019 – Directions hearing to hear submissions for suppression order and public interest immunity applications
- Monday 18 November to Friday 20 December 2019 – Inquest
An additional directions hearing may be held between 14 August 2019 and the commencement of the inquest in November 2019, if required.
Pursuant to section 11 (1) of the Open Courts Act 2013, the Coroners Court will notify media agencies of all suppression order applications prior to the directions hearing on 14 August 2019.
DIRECTIONS HEARING FOR BOURKE STREET INQUEST
Monday 1 April 2019
Victorian Coroner Jacqui Hawkins will hold a directions hearing for the inquest into the 2017 Bourke Street tragedy at 10am on Tuesday 2 April 2019.
During the directions hearing, Her Honour will consider the:
- draft scope of the inquest
- draft witness list
- proposed timelines
- date of the coronial inquest.
At the commencement of the hearing, counsel assisting will provide a summary of the coronial investigation to date and events since the last directions hearing in July 2017.