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Police officer found not guilty of 'sack whack' assault

A police officer who slapped the testicles of a senior colleague as a prank has been found not guilty of assaulting him.


Constable Paul Michael Vella, 27, was accused of hurting Senior Constable Gary Stoddart, 41, so badly that he eventually had to have a testicle removed.


Constable Vella was charged with assault occasioning actual bodily harm, reckless grievous bodily harm and common assault over the prank, which took place at Glebe Police Station in May 2015.


In court, Constable Vella claimed that the pair would regularly flick each other's groin regions as a joke, however Senior Constable Stoddart claimed that on the occasion in question, his colleague grabbed his testicles and squeezed hard.


Senior Constable Stoddart said he experienced severe pain, and was eventually diagnosed with epididymitis, where the tubes inside the testicle become inflamed.


There were no witnesses or CCTV footage, but the court was shown medical records, text messages and statements from colleagues.


While Magistrate Robert Williams found Constable Vella not guilty, he did find that the pair had engaged in up to 50 incidents of 'sack whack' previously.