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Sexual assault complaints to WA Police went to unmonitored email address

Oliver Peterson

A Perth woman whose sexual assault complaints went unanswered because WA Police listed the wrong email on the website fears there have been more people caught up in the technical bungle.

The unmonitored email address was listed on the site for at least two years.

Melissa Callanan emailed the account in March 2018 and when she followed up the issue in November was told there was no record of her complaint and that she must have got the address elsewhere.

Ms Callanan told Oliver Peterson she’s been told on multiple occasions she’s wrong.

In a statement WA Police said,

WA Police Force is responsible for the management of the WA Police Force website.

This administrative error regarding the incorrect email address was brought to the agency’s attention
in late 2018.

Initial inquiries suggested the email address published on the WA Police Force website was correct,
and that the wrong email address was on an external website.

That incorrect information was provided to the complainant and the Minister for Police, and it was
that information that the Minister relayed in correspondence to the complainant.

Once the error was identified, it was corrected on the police website.

Once received, the specific allegation of assault was progressed by WA Police Force and the
complainant advised of the outcome.

WA Police Force is reviewing the use of the incorrect email address. While WA Police Force is not
responsible for information published on other websites, it is engaging with stakeholders to ensure
they are aware of contemporary information.

Image courtesy of Greg Newington.

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Oliver Peterson