Zachary Rolfe's lawyer says there were no winners, after the Northern Territory police officer was acquitted of all charges over the fatal shooting of Aboriginal teenager Kumanjayi Walker in November 2019.
After a trial that ran for almost five weeks, a jury deliberated for about 24 hours before reaching their verdict.
A light smattering of applause was heard from right hand side of the court, while supporters of Kumanjayi Walker remained silent.
After the verdict was handed down, Constable Rolfe hugged his lawyer, David Edwardson QC, and high-fived and winked at friends.
Shortly after the courtroom had been cleared, wailing could be heard from inside among the Warlpiri community who had travelled to Darwin from Yuendumu in support of Mr Walker.
Outside court, Mr Edwardson said there were "no winners" from the outcome.
"A young man died and that's tragic. At the same time, Zachary Rolfe in my view was wrongly charged in the first place," he said.
Echoing the words of NT Chief Minister Michael Gunner shortly after the shooting and before charges were laid, Mr Edwardson said "consequences will flow".
Constable Rolfe spoke briefly, saying: "Obviously I thought that was the right decision to make, but a lot of people are hurting today ... so I'm going to leave this space for them."
Crown prosecutor Philip Strickland SC said they respected the jury's verdict, "as we must".
"Before this trial started, we travelled to Yuendumu to meet the family of Kumanjayi Walker and to meet the Warlpiri community," he said.
"We would like to acknowledge their presence and we would like to acknowledge their grief and we would like to acknowledge the dignity they have shown throughout this whole court case."
He said there would be further issues that would be "very carefully scrutinised" in an upcoming coronial inquest into Mr Walker's death.
"The shooting at Yuendumu raised issues, not all of which could be explored at this trial," he said.
"It is our view that the family of Kumanjayi Walker and the Walpiri community and indeed the Australian people deserve no less than that full scrutiny."
The prosecution argued during trial that Constable Rolfe had not acted in a way that was reasonable or necessary when he shot Mr Walker, a Warlpiri man, three times in the torso during an attempted arrest.
The defence, lead by Adelaide silk David Edwardson QC, argued Constable Rolfe was acting in defence of his then police partner Constable Adam Eberl and in accordance with his duty as a police officer.
The murder charge, as well as the two alternative charges of manslaughter and violent conduct causing death, were laid in relation to the second and third shots fired by Constable Rolfe, now 30. The first was seen as legally justified.
In a statement issued shortly after the verdict, Mr Walker's families said they could not "begin to explain our grief in words".
"His death has affected our community in ways we could never have predicted. We are all in so much pain, particularly our young men. They have struggled, they have been scared yet they have been so respectful of this process," they said in the statement.
"Though throughout this trial Kumanjayi has been depicted as a solely violent, and dangerous individual who in the words of [Mr] Edwardson 'was the author of his own misfortune'. He has been criticised and picked apart by people who did not know him, they saw only his flaws and wished to put him on trial for his own death.
"We as a family and community will continue to remember his as a young man who loved animals, who loved his community and homelands, his partner, his family, his friends, and loved music. A traditional Aboriginal young fella who loved hunting and being out on country. A joyful young man who was generous. A young man who was taken far too soon, and a young man who is deeply missed by everyone."
The families said they would turn their attention to the inquest - which is is expected to take place in the Northern Territory later this year - "where we hope our truth and our questions will finally come".
Indigenous elders from the area also called for an end to police bringing guns in to their communities.
"No more guns in our communities. It must never happen again. The police must put down their weapons. We have been saying this since the beginning. We cannot walk around in fear in our own homes," Ned Jampijinpa Hargraves said.
The jury heard from about 40 witnesses including police officers, forensic pathologists and Constable Rolfe himself.
They also had access to a mammoth amount of evidence and exhibits.
The agreed facts of the case state Mr Walker was an "arrest target" for NT Police after he breached a court order by cutting off his ankle monitor and fleeing a residential rehab in Alice Springs in late October 2019. He returned to his home community of Yuendumu, about three hours away, for the funeral of a close family member.
Police in Yuendumu attempted to arrest him on November 6 but Mr Walker ran at them with an axe, causing them to back away and allowing Mr Walker to escape.
Constable Rolfe watched the body worn video footage of this incident a number of times before encountering Mr Walker himself.
Constable Rolfe was a member of the Alice Springs Immediate Response Team, which was deployed to Yuendumu on November 9 for a number of reasons, including to assist with the arrest of Mr Walker for his court breach and for assaulting police.
Less than an hour after Constable Rolfe arrived in Yuendumu, he had found Mr Walker in his grandmother's house and moved in to arrest him. Mr Walker pulled out a pair of scissors and stabbed him in the left shoulder, prompting Mr Rolfe to shoot him in the chest.
Constable Eberl then grabbed Mr Walker and either forced him or fell with him to the floor, at which point Constable Rolfe fired two more shots into his back, at close range, 2.6 and 3.1 seconds after the first.
For a number of reasons, including that nurses in Yuendumu had been evacuated the morning of the shooting because of a spate of break-ins, Mr Walker did not receive the medical care he needed in time, and died from his injuries about an hour later despite the first aid efforts of police.
Constable Rolfe was arrested and charged with his murder four days later. He was immediately granted bail and lived for about two years waiting for the trial in his home city of Canberra.
The shooting prompted an outcry of grief and anger. Protests were held in the nearest city of Alice Springs and around the country.
There was equal outrage from police ranks after the charges were laid, especially the NT's Police union president Paul McCue, who condemned the charges and has remained by Constable Rolfe's side during almost every court appearance in the last two years.
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