Aboriginal man dies in police custody after collapsing at a prison in Western Australia – as thousands gather for Black Lives Matter protests across the country
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A 40-year-old Aboriginal man has died after collapsing at a prison in Western Australia.
The Acacia Prison inmate was found on Friday but he could not be revived and was pronounced dead at hospital, the state’s Department of Justice said in a statement on Saturday.
Police say there does not appear to be anything suspicious, but they are investigating and there will be an inquest given it is a death in custody.
The Department of Justice will also conduct an internal review.
Acacia Prison is privately-run by Serco Australia.
The incident comes as thousands of demonstrators plan to step out onto the streets across Australia to join the global Black Lives Matter protests and call for an end to Aboriginal deaths in custody.
Thousands are expected at rallies in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Hobart on Saturday to show solidarity with the movement and African American George Floyd, who died while being arrested in Minneapolis.
NSW’s highest court has banned the Sydney protest because it breaches coronavirus restrictions but it is unlikely to stop marchers.
‘The organisers have received strong advice from lawyers across the legal community that the decision has significant flaws that amount to jurisdictional error,’ Greens MP David Shoebridge said on Saturday.
‘Taking the legal jargon away the case will be that the judge got it wrong. That rally is in fact authorised and was agreed to by police.’
Mr Shoebridge gave evidence in court on Friday in support of the rally.