Home' South Gippsland Sentinel-Times : April 19, 2017 Edition Contents PAGE 2 - THE SOUTH GIPPSLAND SENTINEL-TIMES, WEDNESDAY, APRIL 19, 2017
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From page 1
According to Acting Senior Sergeant
Jason Hullick of the Wonthaggi Police,
the incident took place at the McDon-
alds Restaurant at about 2.10am on
Sunday morning, following the clo -
sure of a licensed venue in Leongatha,
when several groups of people moved
on to the popular late -night eatery.
“All of the people involved have
walked down from McCartin’s to Mac-
cas,” he said.
“There was a minor altercation at
the same venue earlier,” he said, al-
leging that it might only have been
“And they have subsequently met
together in the toilets where the inci-
dent has occurred.
“Several punches were thrown and
the young man has sustained facial
injuries that were not as serious as
first thought,” he said.
Act Sen Sgt Hullick acknowledged
that the incident was fuelled by alco -
hol but rejected any idea that it was
He said one man had been inter-
viewed by police over the incident
and a second person, also possibly
involved in the assault, would be in-
terviewed this week. A third man, ini-
tially thought as being involved, may
actually have been trying to intervene,
according to Act Sen Sgt Hullick.
He said the man was very remorse -
ful for his actions.
“People have come forward and are
co -operating with police. They’re all
known to each other. They’re all giving
their versions of what has occurred.”
He said CCTV footage was not avail-
able of the incident which occurred
in the toilets but video surveillance
had been obtained, indicating what
had happened in the lead up and also
which individuals had been seen en-
tering the toilets.
It has since been reported to the
Sentinel-Times that there had been a
verbal and violent exchange between
the two young men in the body of the
restaurant prior to the incident in the
toilet, in which the subsequent of-
fender received a bloodied nose.
Sometime later, the pair have met
in the toilets where it is alleged, there
was a follow up incident.
The injured man has allegedly fallen
on to the tiles in the toilets, after be -
ing struck, and hit his head.
Some of these claims are included
in the information already gathered
by police, who are continuing with
Asked if there was any private secu-
rity provided at the McDonalds Res-
taurant or if police were concerned
about reports such late-night venues
attracted trouble, Act Sen Sgt Hullick
He said he wasn’t aware that there
was any security at McDonalds at the
time or that the after-hours food ven-
ue attracted trouble makers.
“Late-night venues will attract
trouble from time to time but I’m not
aware of any particular issues here, ”
“Do you know of any other inci-
He said that resorting to violence
was never a good way to sort out dif-
“I t’s totally unacceptable. Violence
is unacceptable. There are much bet-
ter ways for adults to sort out their
differences, ” he said.
The injured man is in a stable con-
dition in hospital awaiting treatment.
‘Friends’ fight almost tragic
WONTHAGGI and district
mothers will have to have
their babies elsewhere for
eight weeks from May 25,
after Bass Coast Health
sent letters out to all its
intending mums advising
them of its theatre closure
for necessary maintenance.
The health service, which
operates the Wonthaggi hos-
pital will use that time, and
$1 million from a recent
State Government grant of
$3 million, to replace its
theatre ‘air handling unit’ a
sophisticated air condition-
er, which has been prob-
lematic for the BCH.
Health service CEO Jan
Child has apologised to the
mums and to the commu-
nity in the letter but claims
it is necessary work.
“I t’s been causing the hos-
pital problems for years, on
at least one occasion forc-
ing the cancelation of pro -
cedures, ” she said.
“We haven’t booked any in
during that time (May 25 to
mid-July) but it’s just the
mums we have to work with
She said impending
mums would be offered the
opportunity to go to Leon-
gatha, Foster or Casey to
have their babies but she
suspected Leongatha would
be the first choice of most.
“I t’s the least busy time
of the year for births and
some of our surgeons are
away so this time has the
“We will continue to of-
fer post-natal care here at
Wonthaggi, so they can have
their babies and come back
to us where necessary.
“But because we won’t
have the option of do-
ing Caesars, we can’t offer
birthing here. ”
But Ms Child was keen to
scotch any suggestion that
birthing services wouldn’t
be coming back to Wont-
“I t definitely will be com-
ing back, ” she said noting
that a recent review of the
clinical services plan set
out the long-term future
of birthing at Wonthaggi,
Leongatha and Foster well
into the future.
All surgery has also been
cancelled for six weeks
while works are completed.
No births at
New memorial honours
Wonthaggi’s fallen Diggers
THE need to show more
respect for our fallen Diggers
has inspired Wonthaggi’s
Vern Loeckenoff to organise
a memorial at the Wonthaggi
Cemetery on Anzac Day.
The Vietnam veteran has
created 200 white crosses
with red poppies, which will
be set up in a triangle at the
cemetery, to honour fallen
Diggers of Wonthaggi.
Vern said the Diggers de-
“Some of the graves are so
deplorable, so we’ve got to do
something in the eyes of the
War Grave Commission to
say ‘come here and fix this’,”
“On Anzac Day during the
dawn service and the march,
we’re going to announce to
come down here and pay re-
“Some of them came back
with horrific injuries and
they didn’t die at war, but
they died in the mines and
places like that.
“My wife’s father, Donald
Gordon Featherston, died
in the mine here and un-
beknown to everybody else
here, he was a winner of the
Distinguished Flying Cross,
which is one step down from
“What memory is of him
here? Nothing. That’s what
spurred us on.”
The 200 poppies took
about 50 hours for Vern to
make and Bunnings Wont-
haggi donated materials for
Vern feels strongly about
honouring the fallen.
“We need to bring this back
so people can get some hon-
our and respect in their own
lives again,” he said.
“I hear so many stories
about taking ‘this out of the
ceremony’ and ‘taking that
out of the ceremony’.
don’t need to change any of
that. These guys gave every-
thing for us to be free.”
See more on Anzac Day
events on pages 22 and 23.
RIGHT: Wonthaggi’s Vern
Loeckenoff has created 200
white crosses with red pop-
pies, which will be set up in
a triangle at the Wonthaggi
cemetery to honour fallen
Diggers of Wonthaggi on
Anzac Day. rg111617
Acting Senior Sergeant Jason Hullick of Wonthaggi fronts the media on
Monday this week to explain the circumstances surrounding a violent inci-
dent at the McDonalds Restaurant in Leongatha in the early hours of last
Sunday morning. M761617
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