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Police to remain in Deer Park for weeks to prevent revenge attacks over fatal stabbing of Solomone Taufeulungaki

TIME:2020-06-18 11:33:22 READ:145

A large police presence will remain in Melbourne's western suburbs until the threat of revenge for a fatal attack on a teenager earlier this week eases.

Solomone Taufeulungaki, 15, died after he was approached by a group of up to 10 and stabbed outside Brimbank Shopping Centre on Tuesday.

Six boys aged between 13 and 16 were charged with violent disorder and affray and appeared in a children's court on Wednesday.

No-one has been charged over the death.

Solomone's cousin Aki Faiva told the Today show she was with Solomone right before he was attacked.

"I was walking with him that day," Aki said.

"I was walking with him near the library and then we heard a group of boys run towards us. So then he told me, run, Aki, run, Aki.

"I ran across the street to the church and then they got him and that's when he got beat up.

"I saw everything."

Victoria Police Northwest Metro Commander Tim Hansen said immediately after the stabbing, police turned their attention to the likelihood of retribution.

While a revenge attack had not taken place, Commander Hansen said a heavy police presence would remain in the area "over the next couple of weeks until we get the sense the likelihood of retribution or reprisal is minimised".

Police yesterday activated Operation Omni for 24 hours after receiving intelligence of a potential violent attack.

"We took that step last night but that intelligence never came to fruition," Commander Hansen said.

A black and white photo of a teenage boy in a school uniform.
Solomone Taufeulungaki was stabbed to death outside the Brimbank Shopping Centre.(Supplied)

The operation allows police to declare a location a designated area and gives police further powers to conduct searches for weapons and remove masks from people.

He said there was interplay between different gangs across Melbourne's west and south-east, with communication between the groups carried out over social media.

"If these kids want to come back into the western suburbs of Melbourne and get involved in a fight in coming days or coming weeks, we will be there ready and waiting for them and they will be held to account," Commander Hansen said.

Commander Hansen said police were engaging with community groups to ensure a revenge attack did not happen.

Parents unaware 'how dangerous social media can be'

Pasifika community leader Rita Seumanutafa told the ABC's Pacific Beat program more needed to be done to engage teenagers in school and family life.

"Our kids, right from the get-go, are trying to make life a bit better for themselves and feel like they belong," Ms Seumanutafa said.

A weeping man and woman support each other next to a tree where they have laid flowers.
Solomone Taufeulungaki's parents have forgiven those allegedly responsible for their son's death.(ABC News)

"We have a whole lot of kids dropping out of school and meeting up with like-minded kids and they're out there trying to form groups and the media portrays them as gangs."

She said more funding needed to be provided so Pacific Island workers could engage with Pacific Island children.

"You can't just have one multicultural officer for everyone."

Ms Seumanutafa said many parents were unaware how social media was having a huge affect on how teenagers saw their world.

"Make sure you know where they are and [find out] if your child is engaging, and if they aren't engaging with you or in a family setting there are services, there are groups, with a lot of influence in the community … you can find ways for them to engage."

Knife crime in Melbourne continues to increase

Commander Hansen said while Melbourne was a safe city, it was also a growing capital city in excess of 5 million people, which brought with it higher levels of crime.

"We are a 24-hour, seven-day-a-week capital city. Anywhere around the world when you look at those statistics you have crime issues and you have youth crime issues," he said.

"Knife crime has been increasing for the last five years in the western and northern suburbs of Melbourne."

Commander Hansen said over the past 24 months, police conducted about 560 random searches in designated areas and found weapons about 20 per cent of the time.

He said police were seeing an emerging group of 10-to-14-year-olds being involved in crime, especially in the western suburbs.

"It is a broad area, we know the kids are coming from as far away as Point Cook, from as far away as Melton and Footscray," he said.

"I see the risk this is presenting on a day-by-day basis. It's time for us to say collectively, 'enough is enough'.

Commander Hansen said parents, teachers and community leaders needed to teach teenagers about the "inherent risk that carrying a weapon presents to them".

"If they continue to carry knives, in all likelihood, there will come a time for this parent when their kids won't come home," he said.

Commander Hansen said the image of "American gang culture" resonated with young people across Melbourne.

"They purport to have courage and look out for each other but when you look at how they operate, they are anything but," he said.

"They seek to gain notoriety by retail swarming, getting their hands on goods, they seek to have this brotherhood or sisterhood-type image but in my experience they will sell each other out at the drop of a hat."

Commander Hansen said he hoped Solomone's parents asking for peace would resonate with people to help solve the "wicked" problem of knife crime in the city.

He said he wanted teenagers involved in youth crime to understand they would carry the consequences of their actions with them for the rest of their lives.

Police to remain in Deer Park for weeks to prevent revenge attacks over fatal stabbing of Solomone Taufeulungaki

TIME:2020-06-18 11:33:22 READ:145

A large police presence will remain in Melbourne's western suburbs until the threat of revenge for a fatal attack on a teenager earlier this week eases.

Solomone Taufeulungaki, 15, died after he was approached by a group of up to 10 and stabbed outside Brimbank Shopping Centre on Tuesday.

Six boys aged between 13 and 16 were charged with violent disorder and affray and appeared in a children's court on Wednesday.

No-one has been charged over the death.

Solomone's cousin Aki Faiva told the Today show she was with Solomone right before he was attacked.

"I was walking with him that day," Aki said.

"I was walking with him near the library and then we heard a group of boys run towards us. So then he told me, run, Aki, run, Aki.

"I ran across the street to the church and then they got him and that's when he got beat up.

"I saw everything."

Victoria Police Northwest Metro Commander Tim Hansen said immediately after the stabbing, police turned their attention to the likelihood of retribution.

While a revenge attack had not taken place, Commander Hansen said a heavy police presence would remain in the area "over the next couple of weeks until we get the sense the likelihood of retribution or reprisal is minimised".

Police yesterday activated Operation Omni for 24 hours after receiving intelligence of a potential violent attack.

"We took that step last night but that intelligence never came to fruition," Commander Hansen said.

A black and white photo of a teenage boy in a school uniform.
Solomone Taufeulungaki was stabbed to death outside the Brimbank Shopping Centre.(Supplied)

The operation allows police to declare a location a designated area and gives police further powers to conduct searches for weapons and remove masks from people.

He said there was interplay between different gangs across Melbourne's west and south-east, with communication between the groups carried out over social media.

"If these kids want to come back into the western suburbs of Melbourne and get involved in a fight in coming days or coming weeks, we will be there ready and waiting for them and they will be held to account," Commander Hansen said.

Commander Hansen said police were engaging with community groups to ensure a revenge attack did not happen.

Parents unaware 'how dangerous social media can be'

Pasifika community leader Rita Seumanutafa told the ABC's Pacific Beat program more needed to be done to engage teenagers in school and family life.

"Our kids, right from the get-go, are trying to make life a bit better for themselves and feel like they belong," Ms Seumanutafa said.

A weeping man and woman support each other next to a tree where they have laid flowers.
Solomone Taufeulungaki's parents have forgiven those allegedly responsible for their son's death.(ABC News)

"We have a whole lot of kids dropping out of school and meeting up with like-minded kids and they're out there trying to form groups and the media portrays them as gangs."

She said more funding needed to be provided so Pacific Island workers could engage with Pacific Island children.

"You can't just have one multicultural officer for everyone."

Ms Seumanutafa said many parents were unaware how social media was having a huge affect on how teenagers saw their world.

"Make sure you know where they are and [find out] if your child is engaging, and if they aren't engaging with you or in a family setting there are services, there are groups, with a lot of influence in the community … you can find ways for them to engage."

Knife crime in Melbourne continues to increase

Commander Hansen said while Melbourne was a safe city, it was also a growing capital city in excess of 5 million people, which brought with it higher levels of crime.

"We are a 24-hour, seven-day-a-week capital city. Anywhere around the world when you look at those statistics you have crime issues and you have youth crime issues," he said.

"Knife crime has been increasing for the last five years in the western and northern suburbs of Melbourne."

Commander Hansen said over the past 24 months, police conducted about 560 random searches in designated areas and found weapons about 20 per cent of the time.

He said police were seeing an emerging group of 10-to-14-year-olds being involved in crime, especially in the western suburbs.

"It is a broad area, we know the kids are coming from as far away as Point Cook, from as far away as Melton and Footscray," he said.

"I see the risk this is presenting on a day-by-day basis. It's time for us to say collectively, 'enough is enough'.

Commander Hansen said parents, teachers and community leaders needed to teach teenagers about the "inherent risk that carrying a weapon presents to them".

"If they continue to carry knives, in all likelihood, there will come a time for this parent when their kids won't come home," he said.

Commander Hansen said the image of "American gang culture" resonated with young people across Melbourne.

"They purport to have courage and look out for each other but when you look at how they operate, they are anything but," he said.

"They seek to gain notoriety by retail swarming, getting their hands on goods, they seek to have this brotherhood or sisterhood-type image but in my experience they will sell each other out at the drop of a hat."

Commander Hansen said he hoped Solomone's parents asking for peace would resonate with people to help solve the "wicked" problem of knife crime in the city.

He said he wanted teenagers involved in youth crime to understand they would carry the consequences of their actions with them for the rest of their lives.

Tel:

03 85551111/03 85554666

Add: F17/2A Westall Road,Clayton,VIC 3168

Email us: info@aussos.com




Tel:03 85551111/03 85554666

Add:F17/2A Westall Road,Clayton,VIC 3168

Email us:info@aussos.com