Police are looking for a group of 10 to 15 African youths responsible for two “ugly” and “vicious” robberies on the busy St Kilda foreshore in Melbourne’s south last night.
- Police said the offenders in both attacks were “of African appearance”
- Investigators are examining if a metal or wooden pole was used in the assaults
- Local council has been asked to reintroduce an alcohol ban on the St Kilda foreshore
Police said two men were punched and one had a bottle smashed over his head in separate, unprovoked assaults.
In the first attack, a man had his mobile phone stolen and was left with swelling on his face.
In the second, a 25-year-old man received cuts to his face and head and was treated by ambulance officers.
Police said the offenders involved in both attacks were “perceived to be of African appearance”.
Detective Sergeant David Schaefer condemned the assaults.
“These attacks are quite cowardly and vicious, unprovoked and really an ugly event that actually occurs in normally a peaceful location where people frequently enjoy themselves,” he said.
The attacks happened on Jacka Boulevard at about 10:00pm and police said they were investigating whether the offenders may have used either a metal or wooden pole.
Call for alcohol ban
“We’re looking for a group of males of African appearance which we believe were congregating along the foreshore last night,” he said.
“We can’t speculate as to the numbers involved but on the second assault there was anywhere up to around 10 people who were involved in that second robbery,” Detective Sergeant Schaefer said.
Police said the victims had been “enjoying the sights” of the “iconic” St Kilda foreshore.
“The first victim just decided to walk down [and] enjoy the scenes and the second male was visiting a friend down there when he was accosted by the group.”
Victoria Police Inspector Jason Kelly said he was “very disappointed in what occurred.”
“Unfortunately we’ve had a large group of youth attend and the combination of youth, alcohol and public spaces just simply doesn’t mix,” he said.
He said alcohol at the “iconic beach location” was a “recipe for disaster”.
Inspector Kelly said police were calling for a full alcohol ban along the St Kilda foreshore to be reintroduced by the City of Port Phillip Council.