Two police officers charged with rape released on bail
TWO police officers charged with the rape of a woman in Mackay have been released on bail after appearing in court this morning.
They were not required to enter a plea in their court appearance.
The pair were charged after a rapid and extensive investigation of an incident in Mackay on Sunday morning.
Police Commissioner Ian Stewart said the pair had strict bail conditions imposed ahead of their scheduled committal mention in Mackay on May 9.
The two junior officers, who have been in the police force for less than five years, have been charged with five counts of rape and one count each of assault with intent to commit rape and deprivation of liberty.
Addressing a packed media conference Commissioner Stewart said the constables have been suspended on full pay but will need to show cause as to why they should retain their pay within two weeks.
Under their bail conditions the pair must report to district court once a week and they are to have no contact with witnesses or police. They are also required to have a residential address, a condition which both already meet.
Commissioner Stewart said the prosecution raised concerns over the bail application because of the seriousness of the matter but the court chose to grant bail.
During the media conference it was suggested there were 38 potential witnesses in the case, but Commissioner Stewart did not confirm the number.
"Some information has been given to the court about the number of witnesses - that's my understanding - however we are still investigating this issue," he replied.
"And certainly, as we always do, we will professionally and comprehensively look into all aspects of this matter."
When pushed further on the issue, he conceded it was "possible" the number could be higher than the suggested 38.
In response to a question about the community trusting police officers the commissioner said these allegations were disappointing.
"Even the raising of these allegations is disappointing because it does impact on the trust that the community has with us," he said.
"No matter the outcome of these allegations there is an impact.
"I believe that the vast majority of police officers simply go out every day to do the best job that they possibly can." he said."
TWO male police officers from Central Region have been charged with the alleged rape of a woman in Mackay.
A 29-year-old constable and 28-year-old first year constable will appear in the Mackay Magistrates Court today.
They have both been charged with five counts of rape and one count each of assault with intent to commit rape and deprivation of liberty.
The officers have been suspended from duty.
An immediate investigation was commenced after an incident involving a woman and two on-duty officers was reported to police on Monday afternoon.
The woman was allegedly sexually assaulted in Mackay on Sunday morning.