Man shot dead by police to be given tribal farewell
A RARE Supreme Court decision has given the grieving family of Edward Wayne Logan, who was shot dead by police in Tewantin 11 days ago, the chance to give him a tribal farewell in New Zealand.
Going against usual practice of granting the surviving spouse control of the body, Justice Alan Wilson yesterday appointed Donald Logan, Edward's brother, as administrator, granting him the right to collect the body of his brother and transport it back to NZ to conduct a traditional Maori service, cremation and burial.
Donald's wife, Jody, spoke to the Daily yesterday, overcome with relief after a testing week for the family, which contested the rights to the body after Edward's spouse had originally wanted to transport it to Melbourne.
"We went to court today and won," Jody said, as they prepared to retrieve the body and fly to NZ, where hundreds would farewell Edward. "We've got closure now and we've got the result we wanted and we're taking him home."
In a touching gesture, Donald and Jody passed on the best wishes of the chairman of the Ngati Raukawa tribe in Otaki, NZ, to the two policemen involved in the tragic situation two weekends ago.
"On behalf of the whole tribe ... please pass on and register our prayers and goodwill to the officers involved," the chairman said in a letter sent to Donald and Jody.
Scott McDougall - the director of Caxton Legal Service, the not-for-profit legal group that represented the Logan family - said the significant decision was not only a pleasing outcome for the family, but also for other indigenous communities.
"The circumstances of this case were quite compelling ... it's a good precedent for Aboriginal communities in fact," he said.
The Coroner's findings will not be released publicly, with an inquest into Edward Logan's death, along with a spate of other fatal police shootings of late, set down for 2015.