Lo­cal leg­ends not afraid to tackle knife-wield­ing thieves

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - NEWS -

“They broke into my sis­ter’s shop and we had a look at the video cam­era footage taken from the shop next door and we could iden­tify roughly what they looked like so we spread the word through town for lo­cals to keep an eye out,” Mr Quaid said.

“A mate of mine ended up spot­ting them about 4pm on Satur­day walk­ing along the high­way just south of the Newell Beach turn-off when he was driv­ing past and rang me, and the po­lice.

“A group of us drove out there to see what they were car­ry­ing and we could see they had stolen prod­ucts in their bags.

“By this time the po­lice pulled up and the three of them bolted into the sugar cane field.

“So the four of us and the po­lice split up and chased them through the cane.”

Two of the Sharks play­ers even­tu­ally caught up with the trou­ble­some trio, which is when the two men al­legedly pulled knives out.

The Moss­man men ig­nored their own safety and wres­tled the al­leged of­fend­ers to the ground be­fore hold­ing them for 10 min­utes un­til po­lice ar­rived.

“It wasn’t that scary at the time be­cause it was more the thrill of adren­a­line,” Mr Quaid said.

“The po­lice were re­ally help­ful and did a re­ally good job, the praise should re­ally go to them.”

Moss­man De­tec­tive Sergeant Trevor Per­ham said that the “young lads” pro­vided valu­able as­sis­tance.

“There was only my­self and one uni­formed fe­male of­fi­cer at the time so we couldn’t have ar­rested them with­out their as­sis­tance,” he said.

“I’d like to ex­press my ap­pre­ci­a­tion for the as­sis­tance pro­vided to po­lice. The in­for­ma­tion that was pro­vided through­out the in­ves­ti­ga­tion and the ar­rest from lo­cals and res­i­dents who wit­nessed the of­fences were very help­ful.

“It is lovely to see the sup­port from the com­mu­nity.”

The three were charged with 32 of­fences in­clud­ing bur­glary, break­ing and en­ter­ing, weapons of­fences, ob­struct­ing po­lice and un­law­ful use of a mo­tor ve­hi­cle.

Po­lice said they found stolen prop­erty in­clud­ing cash, jew­ellery, food, al­co­hol, clothes and elec­tric- ity items which will be re­turned to their own­ers.

It is be­lieved the trio al­legedly stole a Holden sedan from a Cairns car park on Fri­day night be­fore driv­ing to Clifton Beach and forc­ing en­try to a bot­tle shop where a quan­tity of liquor was stolen.

They then con­tin­ued their jour­ney along the Cap­tain Cook High­way be­fore crash­ing just north of Rex Look­out about 1.30am.

The ve­hi­cle was ex­ten­sively dam­aged and one of the al­leged of­fend­ers in­jured his leg in the crash, leav­ing a trail of blood at ev­ery crime scene.

It is un­der­stood that they hitched a ride to Moss­man where their crime spree con­tin­ued on Satur­day morn­ing.

Busi­nesses

tar­geted

in­cluded Food Star Su­per­mar­ket, Sara’s Hair Salon, Bar­ber-Q, GMI and the Na­tional Bank, as well as one res­i­den­tial prop­erty, with ex­ten­sive dam­age caused.

Moss­man po­lice are keen to hear from any­one who can shed some light on how the trio made it to Moss­man from the Rex Look­out.

Moss­man po­lice Det Sgt Trevor Per­ham said that they were lucky to get out of the ve­hi­cle with lit­tle in­juries.

The three al­leged of­fend­ers ap­peared in the Cairns Mag­is­trates Court this week where Ri­ley and Ral­ston were granted bail.

Ham­mers did not ap­ply for bail and was taken to Lo­tus Glen Cor­rec­tion Cen­tre on re­mand.

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