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Related Agencies

In this section of the site we will look at some of the organisations that control or work with the police.

The Northern Territory Police Force is part of a tri-service; the Northern Territory Police, Fire and Emergency Services, with the controlling officer being the Commissioner of Police and Chief Executive Officer of Fire and Emergency Services.


The police have roles as instruments of both the government and the judiciary as well as having independent function.  Correctional services deal with the offenders that police or the office of the director of public prosecutions successfully prosecute.  No story of any police organisation would be complete without reference to those institutions.

Commonwealth Police



Unlike most states in Australia the NT and Tasmania have Fisheries Enforcement as a police responsibility.   The NT Water Police Section conducts compliance and enforcement operations on behalf of the Director of Fisheries since the transfer of responsibility under Administrative Arrangements in 1981.


Fisheries are responsible for setting the policy and strategy for fisheries enforcement based on the current science and information available.   Fisheries maintain the licensing system which is recorded on a database called FISHDAT.


Fisheries also supports the Indigenous Community Marine Ranger Program. 

Sea Rangers

The Indigenous Community Marine Ranger Program is supported by NT Fisheries, land councils and local communities.  They conduct patrols of their coastal regions and provide information back to Water Police, Customs and other agencies regarding offending and problems in those areas.   


Training began in 2009 and in 2012, 58 rangers had completed a Certificate II in Fisheries Compliance.


Correctional Services

This section has little detail - you may be able to help develop it.

The Northern Territory Correctional Services is responsible for the management of prisoners and juvenile detainees while incarcerated including rehabilitation and reintegration into society. Police in many cases are required to carry out correctional functions and work closely with Correctional Services.


The two major extant adult facilities are:

  • Alice Springs Correctional Centre

  • Darwin Correctional Centre (previously Berrimah Gaol)


The juvenile or youth facilities are:

  • Don Dale Youth Detention Centre (Darwin)

  • Alice Springs Juvenile Holding Centre.


Historic Facilities
  • Fannie Bay Gaol - H.M. Gaol and Labour Prison Darwin

  • Stuart Town Gaol -1909-1938

Correctional Services


The Northern Territory National Emergency Response or 'Intervention' followed publication of the 'Little Children are Sacred' report in June 2007.   The intervention by the Howard Government was wide reaching.  Operation Themis was the policing response that saw police from the Australian Federal Police and other state forces posted to the Territory to provide a presence in a number of remote communities. Operation Themis dealt with more than 15,000 incidents and more than 4000 crimes.  More than 2,300 arrests were made.


The Australian Federal Police withdrew from the intervention in June 2011.  The intervention is to conclude in 2012.

"Through the NT intervention the AFP has made a significant contribution to increase safety in indigenous communities, which has been proven through documents such as community perception surveys" - Assistant Commissioner Frank Prendergast.

In July 2011 eight (NT Police) Community Engagement Police Officers were deployed as part of a community policing trial based in Alyangula, Maningrida, Wadeye, Lajamanu, Yuendumu, Hermannsburg, Ali Curung and Papunya in a $3.4 million pilot program funded by the Australian Government.

Policing in remote areas of the Northern Territory is a truly unique job. The climate, wildlife and job challenges are very different to most other parts of the world. So too is the community and,of course, the officers who make up the police force protecting them. It’s interesting that what’s written on the Great Seal of the United States and printed on their one dollar bill is also very true in Australia: E Pluribus Unum – ‘out of many, one’, or more loosely translated: ‘one nation from many people’.

E Pluribus Unum by Wolfgang Langeneck


THEMIS stations on this website



Wikipedia Article - NT National Emergency Response.


NTP Media release 5 July 2007 - re Operation Themis

Operation Themis article by Sandra Mitchell in 2007


International Police Association


Museums / Historical Bodies

Like the NT Police Museum there are many other bodies that preserve and share history that is in some way connected to the NT or Police.  


Police Museums


Northern Territory Police Museum (us)

Timber Creek Police Station Museum (our page)

Borroloola Police Station Museum (our page)

Australian Federal Police Museum 

The first 30 years

Centenary of Federal Policing in Australia

30 Treasures

South Australia Police Museum  (this is a link to their website - also see our page SA Police Museum)

Queensland Police Museum

New South Wales Justice and Police Museum

Victoria Police Museum (Video)

WA Police Museum

New Zealand Police Museum


Other Relevant Museums

National Museum of Australia (Canberra)

Northern Territory, Museum and Art Gallery

South Australia Museum

Defence of Darwin Museum

In the Line of Duy - Australian Police History Timeline

National Police Memorial



City of London Police Museum

Essex Police Museum

British Police Museum (on line)

Museum of Policing Cheshire

Metropolitan Police Crime Museum

Northern Ireland Police Service Museum

Essex Police Museum

Greater Manchester Police Museum

Kent Police Museum




New Yourk City Police Museum

American Police Hall of Fame and Museum

Phoenix Police Museum

Drug Enforcement Administration Museum

US Marshalls Service Museum



Vancouver Police Museum



Large list of international Police Museums at Police History .com

Hong Kong Police Museum 

Australian Military Police Museum, Lamia Barracks Holsworthy

Australian War Memorial (colonial period)


NT Emergency Service

The Northern Territory Emergency Service is part of the Northern Territory Police, Fire and Emergency Services (NTPFES or tri-service).   The role of the NTES is to provide a response capability for emergency events through a network of volunteers.  It facilitates emergency planning and education in cooperation with the NT Government, local governments and community groups.


NTES in 2012 had 19 permanent staff and coordinates over 300 volunteers in 30 regional units from headquarters in the Peter McAulay Centre in Berrimah and offices in Katherine, Tennant Creek, and Alice Springs. The NTES has a Director who reports to the Commissioner of Police and CEO Fire and Emergency Services.


Visit the NTES Website.


NT Fire and Rescue Service

The Northern Territory Fire and Rescue Service (NTFRS) is part of the Northern Territory Police Fire and Emergency Service (NTPFES).   As part of the tri-service the Chief Fire Officer of the NTFRS reports to the Commissioner of Police and CEO Fire and Emergency Services.


NTFRS is responsible for response to fires, vertical and other rescue and promote fire safety and monitor a network of fire alarms using the NTFAST system.



NT Fire and Rescue Website


Patrol Officers

Patrol Officers

Retired Police Association of the NT

Many who retire from the Northern Territory police suffer trauma and depression. They miss the job and their mates. The Retired Police Association of the Northern Territory Incorporated (RPANT) is a way of keeping in touch with former colleagues.


The association was formed on September 29th 1997. Its founding President, Mr Peter Hamon APM, was the driving force behind its formation.

The Association is not only open to retired members, but also those honourably discharged. Whether members end their service through resignation, ill-health or early retirement, they are eligible to join. Officers about to leave the NT Police who wish to join should contact the Association for an application form.


Membership costs $30.00 per year. Members receive quarterly newsletters by email or post

Clink the  link to open RPANT website 



Search & Rescue Agencies

NT Police has responsibility for search and rescue in the Northern Territory as a shared responsibility with the commonwealth under an inter-governmental agreement. 


The major search and rescue bodies within the Northern Territory Police, Fire and Emergency Service (NTPFES) are:



Other agencies outside of the NTPFES are listed below.

The Courts

The Courts

The history of police is inextricably tied to that of the Judiciary.  Prior to the inception of the Northern Territory Police Force the police role was almost completely directed by magistrates and although this role has expanded greatly the judiciary exercise control and oversight over many police activities and are also a major customer of police services.  The early role is discussed more in the 'World Police History'.


In 1875 South Australian legislation allowed Justice William Wearing to sail to Port Darwin on the steamer Gothenburg.   After 4 trials he returned but was killed when the ship struck a reef south of Cooktown, Queensland drowning 102 of the 126 passengers including Wearing, his associate Lionel Pelham and South Australian Crown Solicitor James Whitby.   The wife and four children of Territory Stipendiary Magistrate Edward Price also died.


Government residents in the early days were Commissioners authorised to exercise the powers of a Supreme Court Judge.


The original Port Darwin Court House was a wooden building designed by John George Knight and opened in 1874.  It was destroyed by termites within 10 years and replaced by a stone building also designed by Knight in 1884.


The Alice Springs courthouse was a staff dining room in the Telegraph Station.  The Officer in Charge acted as a Special Magistrate.  Prisoners were marched in neck chains to Oodnadatta where they went to Port Augusta by train.


Charles James Dashwood was Resident and Judge from 1892-1905.  He prepared an Aboriginal Protection Bill for the Kingston government of 1898 but it was defeated.


Commonwealth Supreme Court Ordinance 1911.

Supreme Court Act 1961


Darwin Rebellion 1918-19 resulted in the evacuation of resident Gilruth and his associates including Justice DJD Bevan.

Following Ewing Royal Commission of 1921.

Early Judges 

1921 - 1927  D.A. Roberts 

1928 - 1932  R.I.D. Mallam

1933 - 1952  Thomas Alexander Wells

1951 - 1960  M.R.C. Kriewalt


Full list on Wikipedia


Wells sometimes had conflict with residents Abbott and Driver.   He continued in his role during WWII while the other parts of Government were relocated to Alice Springs. Colonel Noel Loutit was the Army Commander of Darwin during WWII. 

Circuit Courts

While the main courts are in Darwin and Alice Springs there have been circuit courts at many locations throughout the Territory.   One of the earliest circuits had it's 125th Anniversary at Borroloola in September 2011.  Visit the Borroloola Anniversary page.

Wikipedia Links

Government of the Northern Territory

Administrator of the Northern Territory

NT Legislative Assembly - Northern Territory Legislative Council

Northern Territory Supreme Court




Big Boss Fella All Same Judge: A history of the Supreme Court of the Northern Territory by Dean Mildrens was published in 2011.

UN Deployments

UN Deployments

Members of the Northern Territory Police have been deployed to a number of locations around the world as part of UN missions.


Mission locations


Dates of interest.

  • 1923 - formation of the International Police Commission in Vienna (now known as Interpol, with its 177 member states)

  • 1987 Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters Act.

  • 1992 - Europol created by the Maastricht Treaty on European Union


In 1998 former Territory and Federal police Commissioner Mick Palmer was nominated as a candidate for Interpol post of Secretary General.

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