On February 12, 2014, Luke, 11 was killed by his father Greg Anderson at Tyabb cricket ground Melbourne.
Shot by police at the scene, Greg later died in hospital. Since then, Rosie Batty has been fighting a legal battle, attempting to bring to light the systemic failings that led to the death of her son on that fateful day.
Today, Rosie Batty can breath easy as she has finally been able to find “closure” in the findings of a Coronial Inquest.
Justice Ian Gray announced Luke’s father, who was struggling with mental illness, as “solely responsible” for the death of his son.
The judge also made over 20 recommendations into the systemic failures that could have prevented Luke’s death.
“It’s a monumental day, a degree of closure, but really a great degree of hope.” said Rosie Batty in a statement earlier today.
“I’m more than pleased with Judge Gray’s findings. I think he’s done what I always set out to do, which was to highlight systemic failings, but not apportion personal blame.”
“This could have been prevented if we review how we work together.”
Accountability was an issue that Ms. Batty believed needed to be addressed in order for changes to be made to a system that so often appeared broken.
Ms. Batty lamented the fact that Greg was never held accountable for his crimes and praised Judge Gray’s ruling, stating that now perpetrators would be held accountable.
“Luke’s findings helped me realise through the journey before the inquest that Greg was never made accountable, not once. This is unacceptable.”
“And the biggest change we need to see is how we effectively intervene with perpetrators and work to stop the violence.”
Judge Gray extended this sentiment to Rosie stating that “Luke hasn’t died in vain.”
“That’s what I’ve been working for. Luke hasn’t died in vain and if I look back over the years since Luke’s … since we were at the inquest in that building, there’s some amazing things that have happened,” she said.
Rosie went on to praise the newly formed Turnbull government in announcing new funding for combatting domestic violence across Australia. Whilst she is grateful for the step forward, she admits there is still a long way to go in addressing, and eradicating the issue.
Justice Gray said that delays had occurred in the justice system whereby the Department of Human Services and local police, had neglected to look into claims of violence made by Batty on several occasions.
Victoria Police responded to the findings by stating their commitment to working with families to end the cycle of violence, and respond accordingly.
“Victoria Police is absolutely focused on the critical job of improving our response to family violence,” the statement read.
“We acknowledge the difficult and challenging work that our members are confronted with every day in dealing with family violence incidents.
“We are committed to better working amongst all agencies involved in the prevention and investigation of family violence incidents.”
Although the findings have helped shed light on a broken system, and provide Rosie with a sense of closure, she will continue to focus her attention on anti-domestic violence campaigning.