Two men charged after family says shots were fired at them on remote NT highway

Police say assault and firearm charges have been laid against two men after a family alleged shots were fired at their car near Borroloola in the Northern Territory.

The family said the men fired shots from their car after following them along the Carpentaria Highway on Thursday night.

NT Police issued a statement on Saturday night saying charges had been laid “in relation to an incident involving a firearm”.

“Two men aged 31 and 19-years-old have each been charged with one count each of aggravated assault, and driving in a manner dangerous and two counts of firearm offences,” the statement said.

“Investigations are ongoing and further charges may be laid.”

On Friday afternoon, Borroloola woman Shay Wright told the ABC her family including two small children were returning from a fishing trip on Thursday night when the incident happened.

Ms Wright said the family heard a gunshot from a 4WD that had tailed their car after leaving the Heartbreak Hotel roadside inn.

She said a firearm was then aimed at the family’s car and a shot was fired that did not hit the vehicle.

Community protests for arrest

On Saturday afternoon, prior to police announcing the charges, Borroloola community members gathered outside the police station calling for an update on the investigation.

Lisa Watson, who was in the car allegedly shot at, posted a video to Facebook asking why the men had not been arrested.

“This is f***ing serious, black lives matter, or do they not?” she said.

In their statement on Saturday night NT Police defended their handling of the incident.

“Police responded to the original incident immediately and since then have conducted numerous interviews and gathering extensive information relating the alleged incident,” the statement said.

Police did not say whether the men had been arrested or were in custody.

No detail was given about the nature of the firearms charges.