Gary Jubelin: ‘NSW Police want you to think the worst of me’
If 18 months ago someone told me I would no longer be a cop I would have laughed at them. If they added I would be waiting for a verdict to be handed down regarding my guilt or innocence following a two-week criminal trial, I would have said they were mad.
But it has all really happened and on Monday, after a sleepless night, I'll hear the verdict in the Local Court case the NSW Police brought against me after I spent 34 years as a cop.
It's not appropriate for me to comment on the evidence put before the court prior to the verdict being handed down, but I am calm and comforted by the fact in this state we have an open justice system.
The experience of being charged and tried has changed me forever. I now realise the immense pressure you face when you are the accused and not the accuser. I have felt the humiliation of fronting up each day as the defendant. I've been humbled to see family, friends and supporters turn up each day, and I've been hurt by watching my children walk into court beside me, so stoically supporting me.
They should not have to support their Dad as a defendant. The murder victims' families who've come to court should have been able to rely on me, as a police officer, to support them - not the other way around.
It's been a difficult 12 months for me, but everything is relative. What is occurring around the world at the moment puts clearly in perspective how trivial my situation is. It helps to remember that, when dwelling on the predicament I find myself.
Obviously, like anyone in the same situation, I am hoping for a favourable verdict tomorrow when the Magistrate, Mr Hudson, hands down his findings.
Regardless of the decision I can't complain, because I have had my day in court - an open court, despite police efforts to keep it all secret - and I had a great legal team supporting me.
My greatest fear was the hearing would be held behind closed doors. This is what certain senior NSW Police desperately wanted. From a public relations perspective, it suited their narrative to have me painted in the worst possible light. As far as the NSW public knew, I was the corrupt detective taken off the William Tyrrell case. I was facing serious criminal charges and if found guilty could find myself in jail.
If that wasn't enough to damage my reputation, certain persons within the NSW Police thought it appropriate to also release details of an internal investigation regarding workplace issues. There has been no investigation into who was responsible for releasing this information. This is a far cry from the effort and resources put in by the NSW Police to investigate the allegations against me.
If the court was closed, the oppressive actions taken against me would appear justified, at least in the public's mind. The police's official narrative - that I was a rogue cop gone bad - was well orchestrated with selective information leaked to the media by sources within the police.
A closed court would have prevented me from publicly defending myself against all the allegations thrown at me. Whether I was found guilty or innocent, the NSW Police would never have to justify the actions taken against me. The public would not have been able to see inside the closed court.
More importantly they would not be judged on why they removed me from the William Tyrrell investigation at a critical stage, without allowing me to do any handover of my intricate knowledge of the investigation.
They would not have to justify why they made crucial decisions regarding the Bowraville investigation which relates to the murder of three children without consulting me, despite the fact I had led the investigation for the past 23 years.
There is a culture within the NSW Police that we stick together, I have been part of that culture for a long time and it's a culture I strongly support. I have no animosity towards the NSW Police. I know how tough 'the job' is and I have immense respect for the work carried out by the dedicated men and women of the NSW Police.
However, I do have an issue with certain senior police who put personal ambition above their duties. We are public servants after all, we are there to serve the public. That should always be our primary objective.
These allegations have cost me so much. I have lost my career, my reputation and friendships that go back to my days in the police academy.
The amount of support provided by NSW Police to police witnesses who gave evidence at my hearing, when I received no support, has made it very clear I am no longer part of the organisation.
I have maintained from the outset was I just doing my job. My job was to find out what happened to William Tyrrell. The fact we don't know what happened to William upsets me more than anything I have been put through.
Where is William? I will never stop asking that question - and nor should any of us.
Originally published as 'Why police want you to think I'm a rogue cop gone bad'