FROM the VAULT – Acting CoP Ronald Joseph Redmond

At the time of his application to join the Queensland Police Force (QPF) on June 19, 1950, Ronald Joseph Redmond was employed as a junior clerk by Qantas Empire Airways, and before that by Queensland Brewery Limited.  Unable to drive a car, ride a motor cycle nor a horse, and consider a poor bushman, Ronald focused on his strength, ‘knowledge of typewriting’, when he applied.  With the appointment approved and training completed, nineteen year old Ron commenced as Constable on February 4, 1952, and quickly joined the Crime Investigation Bureau (CIB) Communications Room.

By 1956, a promotion to the rank of Plain Clothes Constable and move to Brisbane’s CIB Field Staff was achieved, where Mr Redmond’s quiet and methodical approach exposed Queensland’s worst criminals.  For two decades, investigative teams guided by this Detective aided in countless arrests, bringing those criminals to justice and earning Mr Redmond many Favourable Records;

  • For outstanding work performed in connection with an enquiry into injuries sustained by certain babies at the Southport Hospital during 1971-72, and which resulted in the arrest and subsequent conviction of a former nurse employed at the hospital,
  •  Awarded a Commendation for his dedication to duty and good Police work in connection with the investigation into the tragic Whiskey Au Go Go fire which occurred on 8 March 1973.  The very efficient and concerted actions of Detective Sergeant 2/c R.J. Redmond together with other investigating officer, ultimately led to the arrest and conviction of two offenders on a charge of murder,
  •  Awarded a Favourable Record for outstanding ability displayed during the investigation of the murder by an explosive device of a young girl at Maroochydore on 7 August 1974 (see separate blog entry FROM the VAULT / Bomb Outrage Shocks Sunshine Coast Community).

Detective Sergeant Ron Redmond examines blood staining caused during a homicide, 1976.
Image No. PM1754 donated courtesy of The Courier Mail.

A transfer to the Public Relations Unit in 1977 harnessed Mr Redmond’s eloquent nature, after which he became overseer of Commonwealth Games operations in Brisbane, at the rank of Superintendent, in 1982.  This and further promotions to Assistant and then Deputy Commissioner placed the competent and composed police man in an extraordinary position; that of Acting Commissioner during the biggest enquiry in Queensland Police history.  In light of Fitzgerald Inquiry allegations, then Police Commissioner Terence Lewis stepped down from the top job at the order of the Police Minister which was filled by Mr Redmond.

Sergeant 1/c Ray De Bruyn (left) of the Community Relations Branch models a new style broad brimmed hat, introduced for male police officers just in time for World Expo 88. Acting Commissioner Ronald Redmond holds another example and shared the pride of Brisbane and Qld in hosting this 6 month event.
Image No. PM3646 courtesy of the Queensland Police Museum.

The Telegraph reported sentiments expressed by the newly appointed caretaker Commissioner; “I have taken over in heart-rending circumstances, but with one firm priority – the intention of total service to the public.  We are facing a very busy year in policing – Expo 88 is one example – and I am confining my efforts towards policing, and the police (The Telegraph, 22 September 1987, p. 9).”  Almost 30 years on, the exemplary career topped by sound leadership during more than two years as Acting Commissioner is still cherished by police, civilian staff, and the public; a legacy on which the Service moved forward.


This article was written by Museum Assistant Georgia Grier from the best resources available within the Queensland Police Museum.  The Police Museum is open 9am to 4pm Monday to Thursday and 10am to 3pm on the last Sunday of the month (Feb-Nov) and is located on the Ground Floor of Police Headquarters at 200 Roma Street, Brisbane. Contact: E: [email protected]

“FROM the VAULT- CoP Ronald Joseph Redmond” by the Queensland Police Service is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (BY) 2.5 Australia Licence. Permissions may be available beyond the scope of this licence.


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