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Rosie Batty: Luke's death was avoidable

There it was again last night, on display for the nation to see. The strength, the stoicism and the ultimate sadness that has come to define Rosie Batty – the mother who lost her 11-year old son, Luke to a wholly preventable act of violence at the hands of his father during cricket practice in February.

Rosie Batty. Photography Damian Bennett. Styling by Jamela Duncan.
During 45 minutes of compelling Four Corners TV documentary, Rosie catalogued the series of policing and bureaucratic missteps that, combined, led to Luke being cruelly killed by his father, Greg Anderson.
Perhaps the most startling revelation in last night's Four Corners was the fact that Greg – whom police had known for years was suffering from mental disorder and against whom Rosie had taken out multiple intervention orders – had only weeks earlier threatened to decapitate his housemate.
Despite police being aware of the decapitation threat, they failed to pass on the information to Rosie.
Speaking to The Weekly last night immediately after the programme went to air, she lamented the lack of coordination between Victoria’s police services – a coordination she says now would have made her more wary and less likely to allow her estranged partner to spend any time alone with Luke.
"I don’t blame police, they did the best they could with the resources they have," she said. "What upsets me is that we have a system where the various bodies meant to protect women and children in danger are not talking to one another. There needs to be a streamlining of the processes."
Speaking on the Four Corners programme last night, Rosie said: "No-one's taking an overarching look at everything that's going on together. No-one's looking at the complete picture."
At the time Greg Anderson murdered his son, there were four warrants out for his arrest.
Victoria's Police Commissioner Ken Lay acknowledged there were shortcomings in the police processes that currently exist to deal with cases of family violence. He indicated he had strong feelings about what needed to change, but would reserve any further public comment until after the coronial inquest into Luke Batty's death, scheduled to start in October.

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