Handcuffed fugitive sues police for "king hit"

A MAN who fled police across four lanes of traffic while handcuffed before being tackled and breaking his nose is suing the police.

Dominic Michael Burke, 36, is claiming in the Ipswich District Court he was "king hit" by the police officer who arrested him, and on another occasion he was unlawfully arrested and deprived of liberty.

The court has heard Burke was arrested and handcuffed by police for urinating in public in the early hours of the morning.

With his hands cuffed behind his back he fled the scene, crossing four lanes of traffic and was nearly hit by a car, with an officer only one second behind him.

He entered a dead end alley where the officer caught and tackled him.

Burke's counsel claims he was king hit in the incident and that the tackle was unnecessary to reapprehend him as he had nowhere left to run.

His counsel told the court tackling him was unnecessary and negligent behaviour by the police as "the game was up" for Burke.

He was left with a broken nose from his brief flight from the law

However, the Crown defence stated that the officer chasing Burke did not know the alleyway Burke ran into was a dead-end or that he had a number of other officers closely following him.

The court has heard testimony from police that claimed apprehending the fleeing Burke by tackling was appropriate; however, the officer in question also testified he had not received training in what to do when someone flees while handcuffed.

The court heard Burke had drunk six heavy strength beers before the incident but testified he was not drunk.

Burke is claiming physical damage for the broken nose, dental damage and psychological damage.

He is also claiming on a separate incident he was unlawfully arrested after failing to follow contradictory police instructions.

The court heard a case against him for assaulting or obstructing a police officer had been dismissed by a magistrate and he was subsequently taking the police to District Court for unlawful arrest and deprivation of liberty.

The trial is continuing in the Ipswich District Court.

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