Kobee Huddy fatal shooting inquest hears call to 'uninterested' mental health helpline operator
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A mental health helpline operator told a young Adelaide man she did not have any "magical advice" to help him just hours before he was shot dead by police in 2019.
WARNING: The following article contains details that may distress some readers.
Kobee Michael David Huddy, 20, died of a gunshot wound to the chest in May 2019 while at his girlfriend's address in Seaton in Adelaide's west.
The inquest has heard that his shooting death occurred after he called the Mental Health Triage line.
Audio from calls he made to the helpline and then to triple-0 were played to the inquest this week.
The recordings captured a nine-minute phone call in which Mr Huddy asked the operator for advice on how to stop self-harming, to which she replied she did not know.
"I don't know you at all so of course, you know, I couldn't do a full therapeutic therapy sort of thing with you," she said to Mr Huddy over the phone.
He explained he was in a desperate situation and was admitted into hospital the night before, and then sought advice on how to stop self-harming.
"Stop from doing what, Kobee? I've got no idea what you're doing," the operator said.
"If you keep doing it, you need to be in therapy … mental health triage isn't to teach you those skills."
The operator tells Mr Huddy that he "clearly" needs to go back to hospital.
When Mr Huddy asked whether he could get "some advice over the phone", the operator replied: "Like what?"
"I haven't got any special magical advice, it's just nonsense to think that mental health triages could do that," the operator said, before saying an ambulance would be called for Mr Huddy.
Addressing the inquest on Wednesday, Counsel assisting the Coroner Peter Longson was critical of the nurse's tone.
"The nurse on the call at times appears to be blunt with Kobee and uninterested in his request for help," Mr Longson said.
The inquest heard that, after the call to Mental Health Triage, Mr Huddy then called triple-0 and threatened police.
"Send me some cops … for bloodshed," Mr Huddy said over the phone.
"You are speaking to police right now and it's recorded," the operator replied.
He then calls for a second time and tells the operator he has a gun.
The inquest heard police officers converged on Mr Huddy's location after receiving those threats and were under the impression he had a gun.
Officer Sergeant Darren Mead, who passed away recently, was the first to encounter Mr Huddy who was wielding a knife, which he later said to authorities he believed was a shotgun.
"Sergeant Mead can be heard yelling, 'Put it down, put it down'," Mr Longson previously told the inquest.
"[He] continued to walk backwards, knowing other police were on their way – he was waiting for other police to arrive with a taser.
"[He] saw at the corner of his eye the patrol turn up, but at the time, Kobee appeared to take two or three quick steps.
"Sergeant Mead said he felt in imminent danger and discharged a single shot."
It has since been revealed that Sergeant Mead did not have an up-to-date taser license and approached Mr Huddy alone.
A lawyer for Mr Huddy's family previously told the court the family holds no animosity towards the police, and understood that officers deserved to go safely home to their families each night.
"But they've since wondered countless times whether it was really necessary to shoot Kobee," the lawyer said.
The inquest continues.
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