New Footage Has Been Released Showing Six NSW Police Officers Handcuffing An 81 Y.O W Dementia

New footage has been released showing six police officers using two sets of handcuffs on a distressed 81-year-old woman with dementia in 2020.

Body-worn camera footage obtained by The Guardian shows Rachel Grahame, who weighs 45kg and has advanced dementia, clearly in distress as a team of six police officers surrounded her and handcuffed her at her Randwick aged care home on 31 October 2020.

The footage was released by Rachel’s family amidst the news of a 95-year-old dementia sufferer being tasered by NSW Police this week.

During the confronting video, Rachel can be seen screaming due to the tightness of the restraints and calling one police officer a “big brute”.

The incident occurred after the 81-year-old took a lanyard from a staff member at her nursing home.

Rachel’s daughter, Emma Grahame, has now spoken out publicly for the first time since the incident.

“It just showed me that the police have learned nothing from the actions that we took against them,” Grahame told the Guardian.

“This is one of the reasons I am happy to go public now, to point out that this is not the first time that this has happened. It might bring other people out as well.”

Rachel’s family sued NSW police and accused officers of assault, battery and false imprisonment. In November 2021, the police settled and paid compensation for their treatment of Rachel.

81-year-old Rachel Grahame. Image courtesy of The Guardian.

The incident occurred after Rachel took some papers and an electronic tablet from a nursing station. According to The Guardian, one of the nurses snatched the items back, and Rachel grabbed the nurse’s clothes in response. Then the police were called.

Police notes say that the 81-year-old was “aggressive” and was “forcefully sat in a chair by multiple nurses”. After police arrived, she “struck out at one officer with her arm, striking the officer on the arm twice.”

Rachel can be seen in the footage crying out, “Ow! Help!” Police continued to restrain her, holding her by her arms and legs.

After paramedics arrived, Rachel was taken to hospital. She would spend six weeks recovering there.

Rachel’s family pushed for further police training in how to deal with dementia sufferers and were reportedly disappointed that no changes were made.

Her daughter was frustrated about how the situation was managed and says it should have been immediately clear that she didn’t need to be arrested.

“Her language difficulties are such that she was incapable of understanding their directions, not out of resistance, but because the language going into her brain is as scrambled as what comes out of her mouth,” her daughter said in a statement.

“She can understand tone, however. You can see in the video that she knows how unjustly she is being treated, and her extreme anguish and distress is clear.”

A spokesperson for NSW police has said: “This was a civil matter that has been settled. As such, it would be inappropriate to provide comment.”

Meanwhile, the 95-year-old who was tasered this week remains in critical condition. Her treatment has led to calls for an inquiry into how police handle dementia sufferers.