Release date: 01/08/2022

Former Police Commissioner Mal Hyde AO will lead a combined review of multiple government agencies and their interactions with the families of two children who subsequently died amid suspected criminal neglect.

This afternoon SAPOL Detective Superintendent Des Bray announced Taskforce Prime is now investigating another case of suspected criminal neglect which led to the death of 7-year-old Makai in February this year.

This is in addition to the death of 6-year-old Charlie, who died last month, which prompted the establishment of Taskforce Prime.

Mr Hyde will takeover the existing review established by the government last month following the establishment of Taskforce Prime.

The terms of reference for this review will remain the same but the scope will be expanded to cover the cases of both Charlie and Makai.

The review will be undertaken as quickly as possible while working co-operatively with Taskforce Prime.

Mr Hyde was Commissioner of SA Police from 1997 to 2012. Prior to this he was a member of Victoria Police for 30 years and held a position as Deputy Commissioner.


Quotes

Attributable to Peter Malinauskas

The death of any child is a tragedy, but we are now confronting two disturbing cases of suspected child neglect.

It is clear we need a combined review into the interactions these families had with multiple government agencies, led by an independent, dedicated reviewer.

Upon being briefed about the detail of this case by SAPOL today, I contacted Mr Hyde to ask him to lead this combined review.

It is well accepted this is a complicated area of public policy, but we owe it to children across the state to ensure the systems we have in place are as robust as they can possibly be.

I will have no hesitation making the changes that are necessary.