Full moon may­hem

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - FRONT PAGE - Angelique Pat­ter­son

FU­TURE Full Moon Par­ties might be des­ig­nated lo­cals-only, af­ter a group of Cairns males started a fight-club out­side of the most re­cent event on Satur­day night.

Po­lice and or­gan­is­ers of the Full Moon Party at the Ma­rina last weekend shut down the event by 11.30pm af­ter po­lice had to break up a large-scale fight, in which one man was knocked un­con­scious and another suf­fered a lac­er­a­tion to the head.

The prob­lems started even ear­lier for po­lice when they had to ar­rest a 27-year-old Wonga Beach man for pub­lic nui­sance, af­ter he was re­fused en­try to the event and re­tal­i­ated, caus­ing se­cu­rity to re­strain him un­til po­lice ar­rived.

Port Dou­glas OIC Se­nior Sergeant Damian Mead­ows said they ar­rived just as they re­ceived the call out for the fight and saw one group of peo­ple run off.

‘‘An 18-year-old Red­lynch man was in­car­cer­ated for fight­ing af­ter he at­tempted to re-in­cite the fight when po­lice were deal­ing with the mat­ter,’’ Se­nior Sergeant Mead­ows said.

‘‘Sub­se­quently he was ar­rested and con­veyed to the Cairns watch house, to ap­pear in the Moss­man Mag­is­trates Court charged with pub­lic nui­sance and ob­struct po­lice.

‘‘Peo­ple are drink­ing not for en­joy­ment but for ef­fect and one of the prob­lems is pre-load­ing be­fore they go out. They present well to se­cu­rity be­cause they are pre-loaded and then one or two drinks later and they are in­tox­i­cated.’’

Owner of Lure and or­gan­is­ers of the event Gerry Hughes and Wayne Sta­ple­ton were dis­ap­pointed in the ac­tions of the men, which put a stain on the night even though the ma­jor­ity of the pa­trons in­side the party were obliv­i­ous to may­hem out­side.

‘‘I was so dis­gusted and dis­ap­pointed with what hap­pened and felt sorry for all of our pa­trons – our age de­mo­graphic on Satur­day night ranged from 18 to 72 years young, lo­cals and tourists – they were so well be­haved and have been in the past,’’ Mr Hughes said.

‘‘As for our trou­ble mak­ers, they were 20-25 year-old males from Cairns. I feel their in­ten­tion was noth­ing but fully pre­med­i­tated with no other rea­son to at­tend the event than to cause trou­ble.

‘‘It doesn’t mat­ter how many suc­cess­ful events you hold, it only takes one show of bad faith and it would be a shame for th­ese events to cease through the dis­grace­ful be­hav­iour of th­ese young thugs. Lo­cal publi­cans will not put up with this be­hav­iour.’’

Mr Hughes said they met with Sergeant Mead­ows, who was happy with their in­creased se­cu­rity, 7-foot fenc­ing, bag­gage check­ing and cap­ping of num­ber of en­trants to the event and check­ing ID. Mr Hughes said they found a lot of fake IDs and had more than 150 un­der-age peo­ple try­ing to ac­cess the event.

‘‘We could ramp up the se­cu­rity again and try to have a po­lice pres­ence ran­domly through the evening, the blue shirt is a big de­ter­rent con­sid­er­ing peo­ple know what they can get away with with se­cu­rity,’’ Mr Hughes said.

‘‘We will prob­a­bly even limit it to a lo­cal event only; we don’t have to mar­ket it out­side of Port Dou­glas and Moss­man con­sid­er­ing we def­i­nitely have enough sup­port here with­out mar­ket­ing it to Cairns.

‘‘Hol­i­day­mak­ers are fine, I was on the door all night and chat­ting to peo­ple from Ade­laide, Mel­bourne and Syd­ney – tourists aren’t here to cause trou­ble, even one lovely lady who was 72 loved it.’’

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