"I've been shot, I don't know why." A man has been arrested after a shooting rampage in Darwin that left four people dead, & more in News in 5.

-With AAP.

1. “I’ve been shot, I don’t know why.” A man has been arrested after a shooting rampage in Darwin that left four people dead.

Four men have been killed, and a woman has been wounded, after a gunman opened fire with a pump action shotgun in five different locations in Darwin.

The 45-year-old suspected gunman, who was on parole, was arrested after being on the run for about an hour following the shootings in and around a hotel in Darwin’s CBD on Tuesday.

Detectives will on Wednesday start piecing together the sequence of events, including the motives of the shooter, who’s been named as Darwin local Ben Hoffmann.

He was arrested at the busy Stuart Highway and McMinn Street intersection near where the shootings occurred, with television footage showing him on the ground after being dragged from under his white dual cab ute, kicking his legs at officers from NT Police’s Territory Response Group.

The incident started with reports of a man firing shots at Finnis St at about 5.50pm just outside the Darwin CBD, with the four deaths occurring at the nearby Buffalo Club, Gardens Hill Crescent, the Palms Motel and Jolly Street.


He also tried to enter the Peter McCauley Centre police station to possibly hand himself in, then contacted a duty superintendent who did a “magnificent job in negotiating with him” before the arrest, Police Commissioner Reece Kershaw told reporters.

The alleged shooter is an outlaw motorcycle gang member, well known to police with a criminal history, and the incident is not believed to be terror-related.

Mr Kershaw said he was was released from prison on parole in January after serving at least a year, was wearing an electronic monitoring bracelet, and had acted alone on Tuesday.

“He is an individual who is well known to police and has a number of interactions, adverse, with the police force. So he is well known to us,” he said.


“We’re still trying to establish the intent and the motivation behind this but all I can say is that, sadly, people have lost their lives this evening.”

The man is being held in custody in hospital as a precaution.

Kershaw praised the actions of police.

“This was a first class response. Within the hour, we were able to apprehend and take that offender safely into custody,” he said.

Shortly after the shooting, a group of about a dozen men who were friends and relatives of one of the men who died gathered at the Palms Hotel, many in tears.

Local Matthew James helped patch up a woman who had been shot in the leg near the Palms.

She is in hospital in a stable condition, an NT Health spokeswoman said.

“She was caught up in it, she said ‘I’ve been shot, I don’t know why, I don’t have anything to do with anything.’ She was hysterical obviously,” Mr James told AAP.

The woman who had been shot told Mr James the shooter had been going from room to room, shouting the name of a man he wanted to see and firing his gun.

“People were rushing past me saying someone had just been shooting up the Palms Hotel,” he said.

One witness in the Pioneer Hotel across the road from the Palms initially believed he heard a firecracker.


“I would probably say that 15 to 20 rounds went off over the next five minutes and when we were sitting at the front here, it got very confusing, so everybody was taken inside,” he told the ABC.

Another witness said he got one victim out of the motel.

“Me and this older gentlemen, we watched him walk from room to room shooting every room, and we couldn’t go in there because it was a crime scene,” he told the ABC.

“We got one person out, this gentleman over here but we didn’t realise there was another person in there.”

Known to his friends as “Hoffy”, the actions of the alleged shooter have shocked the Darwin community.

Speaking in London, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the shooting was a “terrible act of violence”.

“I just want to extend my deep condolences and sympathies to all the people in the Territory and particularly in Darwin,” Mr Morrison said.

“This is a very tight community and I know they will be rocked by these events.”

NT Chief Minister Michael Gunner said it was a devastating day for the Territory, “this was not the Darwin we know”, and his thoughts were with families and friends of the victims.

2. Thousands protest against Trump in London.


Thousands of people have protested in central London against US President Donald Trump’s pomp-laden state visit to Britain, but numbers were well down on the tens of thousands who gathered to oppose his visit last year.

Protesters shouted, banged drums and waved placards at what organisers called a “Carnival of Resistance” in Trafalgar Square on Tuesday while Prime Minister Theresa May held talks with Trump a short distance away at her Downing Street residence.

The leader of Britain’s opposition Labour Party, Jeremy Corbyn, addressed the rally, calling it “the living embodiment of what a democratic society was all about”.


Among Britons, Trump is one of the least-liked foreign leaders, with just 21 per cent of people surveyed by YouGov having a positive opinion of him. Among women, that figure fell to 14 per cent.

The protest’s tone was set by a large statue of Trump sitting on a golden lavatory with his trousers around his ankles. People held placards that read “Keep your tiny hands off our Queen”, “Lock him in the tower” and “Free Melania!”

Linda Coplestone, 64, a retired teacher from London, said she was protesting inaction by Trump on climate change.

“We have ruined the planet,” she said. “He has a powerful voice and could do something about it. He chooses not to.”

Often with creativity and humour, the protesters rallied around issues ranging from restrictions on women’s reproductive rights to fears that US businesses would carve up Britain’s ailing but cherished health service.

The crowd, several thousand strong, was far smaller than the one that protested Trump’s first visit to Britain as president in July 2018, but featured the same British humour.

One woman carried a sign carrying the Shakespearean insult, “I bite my thumb at thee!” Elsewhere, a man sold toilet rolls featuring Trump’s face for three pounds a piece.

There were pockets of support. A few men wearing red caps with “Make America Great Again” walked among the crowd. Trump supporters said the protests were an insult to the leader of the United Kingdom’s most powerful ally.


A giant inflatable blimp depicting Trump as a sneering baby in a nappy flew outside the British parliament, remaining airborne as the president held talks with May.

Trump and his wife Melania arrived on Monday for a three-day state visit that included a banquet hosted by Queen Elizabeth at Buckingham Palace on Monday evening.

The protesters have been largely kept away from Trump, with roads closed around Buckingham Palace and Downing Street.

Trump said he was loved in Britain despite the protests. He said he was closer to Britain than any other American leader, citing his mother’s Scottish roots and the two golf courses he owns in the country.

He said on Tuesday he had seen thousands of people on the streets cheering during his visit.

“I heard that there were protests,” he told reporters. “I said: ‘Where are the protests? I don’t see any protests.’

“I didn’t see the protesters until just a little while ago, and it was a very, very small group of people put in for political reasons.”

3. SA midwife found not guilty after the death of two babies during failed home births.


A former South Australian midwife charged over the deaths of two babies during home births has been found not guilty of two counts of manslaughter.

In the first case of its kind in Australia, Lisa Barrett, 52, pleaded not guilty over the deaths of Tully Kavanagh, the second of twins born in 2011 and another baby boy born in 2012.

In the Supreme Court on Tuesday Justice Ann Vanstone cleared her on both counts.

“While I have found that the accused’s conduct in relation to the labours of both women fell short of that of a reasonably competent midwife, in neither case has it been proved beyond reasonable doubt to be grossly or culpably negligent,” Justice Vanstone said.


“Although I find that the accused’s conduct was less than competent, I am not satisfied that her conduct merits criminal sanction.

“My verdict in relation to each count is not guilty.”

Ms Barrett showed no emotion when the verdicts were read and made no comment as she left the court flanked by a group of supporters.

At the opening of her trial, prosecutor Sandi McDonald SC told the court Ms Barrett discouraged Tully’s mother, Sarah Kerr, from giving birth in a hospital, despite the fact she was pregnant with twins.

Ms McDonald said Ms Barrett downplayed the significant risks associated with a twin homebirth and manipulated a fear of hospitals Ms Kerr had developed after the traumatic birth of a previous child.

In her evidence, Ms Kerr she had given birth to the first of the twins, a girl, when Tully’s heart rate began to plummet.

She said she continuously asked Ms Barrett whether she needed to go to the hospital but “that advice had not been provided”.

She eventually delivered Tully squatted in the passenger seat of a car before she and Ms Barrett began to resuscitate him.

Tully was revived in hospital and taken to intensive care, but his life support was turned off the next day.


The court heard the second baby was born to a woman who had several health issues, that put the birth at high risk of complications, and the baby was in the breech position.

The child was not breathing when paramedics arrived at the house, was later diagnosed with a brain injury and “a very poor long-term prognosis”, and died shortly after birth.

The baby’s mother, who also gave evidence, said Ms Barrett assured her throughout her pregnancy that her baby was positioned head down.

The woman told the court she did not find out the baby was in the breech position until she was in labour and Ms Barrett felt toes during an examination.

“No concerns were raised,” the mother said.

“There were no explanations, no information given, no recommendations.”

Despite calling herself a birth advocate, Justice Vanstone found that Ms Barrett had “held herself out” as having the skills of a midwife and took on the role of a midwife in relation to both births.

“She therefore owed a duty of care to each baby,” the judge said.

However, she said on both counts the prosecution had failed to prove that her acts or omissions during the antenatal period or during labour caused the death of the babies.

She said the prosecution had also failed to prove criminal negligence.


Ms Barrett did not give evidence at her trial.

4. Samantha Knight’s killer, Michael Guider, to stay in jail for at least another month.

The mother of nine-year-old schoolgirl Samantha Knight has welled up with tears acknowledging her daughter can’t be saved, but wants others protected from her killer – convicted pedophile Michael Anthony Guider.

“This is about the ongoing safety of the community,” Tess Knight told reporters outside the NSW Supreme Court on Tuesday.


“We can’t save Samantha. She’s gone.”

Her daughter was last seen speaking to a male in Bondi in August 1986 and died while dosed with a sedative.

Guider, 68, pleaded guilty to Samantha’s manslaughter in 2002 and has almost served his 17-year maximum term, due to expire on Thursday.

But Justice Richard Button on Tuesday ordered Guider – a man with “grossly distorted sexuality” – be examined separately by a psychiatrist and a psychologist who will report back to court “by a date to be fixed”.

In the meantime, Guider will be subject to a 28-day renewable interim detention order from Thursday.

The judge said community safety was the paramount consideration at the preliminary stage of considering Guider’s release.

The court last week heard Guider now denies killing Samantha and claims his confession was made under pressure from police and others.

When he was sentenced over her death, the gardener and part-time babysitter was already serving time for numerous sex offences against more than a dozen other children between 1980 and 1996.

Guider had a well-established method of drugging children with sleeping medication to enable his sex abuse.

Ms Knight said Guider had never been forthcoming in any way, shape or form about his prior offending.


“He has admitted very, very little,” she said on Tuesday.

“He has only made admissions when the evidence has forced him to make admissions. He has never given us details of what happened to Samantha, he has never given us admissions of what he did to her body.”

Ms Knight isn’t satisfied Guider’s “not a risk” and says that needs to be proven.

Justice Button said Guider’s refusal to accept any responsibility for Samantha’s death was “concerning indeed”.

“It intensifies the concerns – expressed 17 years ago by the chief judge – about his refusal to reveal the disposition of the body of the deceased,” the judge said.

“It must be interpreted as a significant backward step.

“In my opinion, it raises a question not only about his acceptance of responsibility for what he has done, but also … his mental state more generally.”

NSW Attorney-General Mark Speakman is seeking a one-year detention order and a subsequent five-year extended supervision order when he is released.

The matter will be determined at a final hearing in the coming months.

“It is true to say that the position of the plaintiff (State of NSW) itself envisages the release of the defendant (Guider) in the reasonably near future,” Justice Button said.

The judge said he was by no means sure Guider’s “chronic, intense, longstanding sexual attraction to children … has dissipated entirely”.


Samantha’s body has never been found.

5. An inquest into the death of a baby has heard he had “black eyes and blood on his face” when paramedics arrived to the scene.

When Tanita Brenssell’s boyfriend of a couple of months offered to look after her 11-month-old son, Israel, she found the help a welcome change to the men she had dated in the past.


A month later the baby was dead.

An inquest into the 2015 death of Israel Bodean Brenssell-Rimene began at the Coroners Court of Victoria on Tuesday.

Israel died at Hamilton Base Hospital on July 13, after being found face down in his cot covered in vomit by Quinton Thompson, who was dating Ms Brenssell.

Counsel assisting the coroner Rachel Ellyard told the court Israel was pulled out of childcare in June and Mr Thompson had taken on increasing responsibility for his care.

“Ms Brenssell found this helpful and quite a change from her past experiences with partners and their willingness to help,” she said.

But in the days before his death, Ms Brenssell noticed a bruise between Israel’s eyes that spread.

“She attributed the bruise to a toy being thrown into his cot and hitting him,” Ms Ellyard said.

The night before Israel’s death, Ms Brenssell heard a “loud bang” from the bathroom, where Mr Thompson had been showering with the baby.

Mr Thompson told her Israel “had a tumble in the shower” and was “a bit whingy.”

Hours later, at about 3am, Ambulance Victoria paramedic John Holland was first to arrive at the scene, finding Mr Thompson on the floor in the main bedroom aggressively performing CPR on the baby, who was wearing only a nappy.

“From the moment I saw the patient, there were no signs of life,” Mr Holland told the court, noting the baby had blood on his face, dark bruising around his eyes, a swollen area on his head and was cold to touch.”


Police Sergeant Mark Phillips helped transport the baby to the hospital and described the scene as “confronting”.

The first thing he noticed was Israel’s two black eyes.

“It’s something I’ll never forget,” he told the coroner.

”When we were going there, I assume we were going for a cot death. When I saw the black eyes, I knew there was something more to it.”

The coroner also heard from forensic pathologist Linda Isles, who despite being unable to offer a definitive cause of death, found Israel had been injured at least twice before his death.

Outside court, Ms Brenssell said her son was a “very happy, bonny little boy” with big, brown eyes and a permanent smile.

“He loved to blow kisses,” she said.

“I hope to learn more about his last days and to understand more and get closure, and hopefully justice (for) the trauma that he has suffered.”

Both Ms Brenssell and Mr Thompson were questioned by homicide detectives after Israel’s death and no charges were laid.

Mr Thompson lives in New Zealand and has been listed to give evidence via video link on Thursday.