On Australia Day, January 26, 2001, in response to a call for assistance from the Kiwirrkura community, a team of three officers from Newman Police Station were collected from Newman Airport by a police Cessna 310 aircraft, call sign Polair 64, piloted by an officer from Karratha.
The officers, having dealt with the situation in Kiwirrkura, began their return journey to Newman at 7.30pm. At 9.50pm Polair 64 entered the circuit area of Newman Airport and shortly after, at about 10.00pm, the aircraft crashed 2.6 kilometres southeast of the airport.
A search was immediately commenced by police and local volunteer emergency services personnel, supported by other agencies and community members, and at 4.30am the following morning the wreckage of Polair 64 was located.
Tragically, all officers on board the aircraft had lost their lives. The impact on their families, friends and colleagues and the community of Newman was and is profound and remains the most significant loss of police life in the modern day policing history of Australasia.
Each year the Remembrance Ceremony is held by the people of Newman to honour this tragic event.
Senior Constable Donald Richard Everett 4600 – Police Air Wing
Senior Constable Philip Gavin Ruland 7877 – Newman Police Station
First Class Constable David Adrian Dewar 9178 – Newman Police Station
Constable Gavin Ashley Capes 10305 – Newman Police Station