Shadow DV minister hired serial offender as his liaison

Neve Brissenden |

NT opposition leader Lia Finocchiaro is yet to comment on the hiring debacle.
NT opposition leader Lia Finocchiaro is yet to comment on the hiring debacle.

A staffer for the Northern Territory’s opposition spokesman for the prevention of domestic violence has been stood down with pay, after revelations he had been jailed multiple times for domestic violence.

Darius Lee Plummer, an electorate officer for the Country Liberal Party member for Barkly, Steve Edgington, has faced court more than ten times for breaching domestic violence orders and bail conditions.

The 43-year-old spent a month in jail in June, 2023, for breaching a DVO.

Two months later he was hired in Mr Edgington’s political office.

The local Tennant Creek member fronted media on Wednesday morning, announcing Plummer would be stood down with pay.

Mr Edgington said he knew about two offences, but was only made aware of the extent of criminal activities after media reporting on Tuesday evening.

“The matters that were raised with me were discussed at length with Mr Plummer,” he said.

“Those matters included two breaches of domestic violence orders  … those matters involved consuming alcohol, those matters did not involve any form of domestic, family or sexual violence.”

Mr Edgington said he wanted to give Plummer a chance in his team. 

“At what point should a person be excluded from ever having employment, what involvement can I have in helping somebody to rehabilitate to break the cycle of domestic violence?” he said.

“My decision was to give him an opportunity to work with me and to break the cycle of domestic violence.”

Plummer has been pictured in a number of social media posts posing with Mr Edgington and Opposition Leader Lia Finocchiaro.

The government has demanded Mr Edgington’s head roll as a result of the hiring debacle.

“All the photos that they have on social media together show that the member for Barkly was condoning that behaviour by his electorate officer,” Chief Minister Eva Lawler said.

“I’m sure on the ground in a small town like Tennant Creek, that it’s impossible that Steve Edgington wasn’t aware of those issues.”

However, Mr Edgington has stood firm so far and refused to resign.

The former Mayor turned CLP member has been an outspoken critic of the territory government’s handling of the crime crisis and rising domestic violence rates.