Policeman jailed for assault on trans woman to appeal sentence

A New South Wales policeman who was found guilty of assaulting a transgender woman and then falsifying records related to her arrest is now appealing his conviction.

In May 2019, Mark Anthony Follington illegally arrested Anya Bradford in a Liverpool pub after he became suspicious of her, and she failed to make eye contact with him.

He and another officer were checking IDS of people in the venue as part of an anti-drug crackdown. Bradford, who was sitting in the venue’s gaming room, declined to show her ID and attempted to leave the venue.

The court saw CCTV footage that showed Follington grabbing her arm, and slamming her head into an ATM, before following her to the lobby of a nearby parole office, where he continued to attack her. Another officer used pepper spray and a taser on her.

The officer later claimed on a police report that Bradford had assaulted him, the video evidence showed that no such assault had ever occurred.

During the trial Follington said Bradford was acting suspiciously because she didn’t smile at him. “People normally come up and say hello, she was keeping her eyes down,” he said.

Follington maintained his innocence through the trial, but was found guilty and sentenced to 30 months in prison with a non-parole period of 18 months.

His legal team have returned to court to appeal saying new evidence had come to light. This week they outlined that they would present new evidence from two experts that will show that their client had cognitive impairment at the time of the offence.

A date has been set down for 14th January 2024 for the case to be heard.

OIP Staff

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