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AustraliaPolice officer David Jenkin found not guilty of bashing Corinna Horvath

07:55  07 december  2018
07:55  07 december  2018 Source:   abc.net.au

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A policeman has been found not guilty of bashing a woman in her home, south-east of Melbourne, 22 years ago.

Police officer David Jenkin found not guilty of bashing Corinna Horvath© ABC News Leading Senior Constable Jenkin was accused of breaking Corinna Horvath's nose. Leading Senior Constable David Jenkin, 49, was accused of breaking Corrina Horvath's nose in the lounge room of her Hastings house.

The four-week trial heard he and six other officers had smashed their way in without a warrant in March, 1996.

Mr Jenkin pleaded not guilty to four charges, including intentionally causing serious injury.

Mr Jenkin stood silently with his hands clasped in front of him, as the jury of five women and seven men acquitted Mr Jenkin of all charges after one day of deliberations.

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Ms Horvath, who was 21 at the time, told the court she could only remember hearing the glass door smash and being flipped onto the floor.

"I remember waking up in the divisional van with my hands behind my back, handcuffed," she said.

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"My face was sore, I was wet … I felt my face and it was all sticky. Everyone was yelling and screaming.

"I was covered in blood."

Use of force was appropriate, court told Ms Horvath told the court she felt continually "harassed and followed" by police, who pulled her and her partner over in their car because it was unroadworthy on the night before the alleged assault.

The policemen went to their home the following day because they thought the couple had ignored their order not to drive the car.

The court heard a scuffle broke out between Ms Horvath and Mr Jenkin after she warned him he could not come onto the property without a warrant.

When the officers returned later that night, Ms Horvath recalled hearing them banging on the door and screaming her name.

"All I heard was 'we want Corinna' — they said 'we don't need a f****** warrant'," she said.

Prosecutors said Mr Jenkin was not defending himself or a colleague when he repeatedly punched Ms Horvath, and his use of force was excessive and illegal.

His defence lawyer said Mr Jenkin had acted in self-defence and his use of force was lawful and appropriate.

The court heard Ms Horvath had a conviction for assaulting police, but she denied harbouring a hatred of them.

She had sued Victoria Police and the case was settled in 2014 after the United Nations Human Rights Commission issued a finding against the force.

Ms Horvath received a letter of apology from Ken Lay, who was the police commissioner at the time, and an undisclosed sum of money.

"I deeply regret what occurred and sincerely apologise for the injuries you suffered as a result," Mr Lay said.

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