Heather McNeill and Marta Pascual Juanola, The Age, January 28, 2021
Perth teenagers enjoying an Australia Day gathering at City Beach have been bashed, robbed and had their heads “stomped on” after being ambushed by a violent mob.
Disturbing vision has emerged of a group of males repeatedly kicking and punching teenagers in the dunes at the popular beach on Tuesday night.
— 9News Perth (@9NewsPerth) January 27, 2021
Footage shows one victim on the ground not retaliating as he is repeatedly struck, while another video shows a boy with his arms over his head attempting to break free from an assault.
The violent group can be heard shouting “run that shit … get it, get it, get his wallet … I got his phone” as someone can be heard pleading, “stop, stop … please mate, please”.
Lisa Melvin told Radio 6PR her teenage son was taken to hospital after being bashed by “a ring of ten people”.
“He originally went in – one of his mates was getting threatened with a knife – so he went in to ty and get that to calm down, and after that they sort of came after him, this large guy, and punched him,” she said.
“About 10 other people just surrounded him and he was just down on the ground and they were kicking him and punching him and he’s come out with bruises all over his head, his shoulder can hardly move, and he’s got bruises just all over his body just from defending his mate.
“A girl tried to get in to help him and they just shoved her away, there was no way his friends could have got to him without getting hurt so he just did what he was trained and went all floppy and put his hands over his ears and protected his face.”
Lisa said she had compiled footage of the culprits from social media posts and had identified them as teenagers from Atwell, in Perth’s southern suburbs.
“My next stop is going to Wembley police station to show them all the footage that we’ve got,” she said.
Another parent, Tony, who asked his surname not be published, said his 16-year-old son had his phone stolen in the chaos.
“There were about 200 kids down at the beach and then 10 or so of these other kids came down and they just started throwing fists and kicking and stealing anything possible that they could get away with,” he said.
“One of the kids came up to my son with an empty wine bottle and waved it over his head and said, ‘Give me your phone and unlock it, give me the passcode or you know what’s going to happen’.
“A girl was bashed, a couple kids had their heads stomped on, there were multiple kicks. One of the girls had their shirt ripped off … it was adult-style bashing; just appalling stuff you’d go to jail for, not just a slap on the wrist.”
Police said the group assaulted and robbed four teenage boys, one of whom had a tooth knocked out, and assaulted another reveller who was walking nearby.
Acting Detective Inspector Stephen Crowley said police had kicked off a manhunt to find the six alleged offenders, who were all believed to be under the age of 20.
He would not reveal what items were stolen from the victims but he said the incident was believed to be a random attack.
“The young men were kicked, punched to the face. Fortunately, the injuries weren’t serious, they were quite minor,” Detective Inspector Crowley said.
“We would like to catch these people as quick as we can.”
Detective Inspector Crowley said the incident had been very traumatic for the teens and their families and called on anyone with mobile phone footage or who was aware of the identity of the attackers to contact police.
“It’s just not acceptable,” he said.
“People should be able to go down to the beach and enjoy themselves.”
Investigations are ongoing, with detectives doorknocking at the scene on Wednesday afternoon.
Anyone in the City Beach/Floreat beach area on Tuesday night with phone or dashcam vision is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or report the information online.