SUFFOLK PARK TERRORISED BY TEEN GANGS
By RACHEL AFFLICK firstname.lastname@example.org
PETER STOLZ says Suffolk Park residents are crying out for a solution to a very serious problem, with kids as young as 12 getting drunk and terrorising the community.
It comes after two men were hospitalised at the weekend after being attacked with a broken bottle by a group of youths.
The men, aged 22 and 18, were allegedly walking past the corner of Brandon and Wareham streets when they were attacked by a group of up to 10 teenage boys.
The 22-year-old was hit over the head with a broken bottle and the 18-year-old sustained hits to the ribs and arms. Both were treated in Byron Bay hospital, and later released.
A 14-year-old boy was later arrested and charged over the incident and will appear at Byron Bay Children's Court on December 12.
A 16-year-old boy was also arrested and questioned, but later released. Byron Bay detectives are still investigating the attack and say further arrests could be made.
Without knowing the circumstances of this latest attack, Suffolk Park Residents Association President Peter Stolz said the community was crying out for an end to the vandalism and violence which occurred every weekend in the town.
He said since the beginning of Schoolies this month the trouble had escalated. But it was an ongoing problem. Residents held a community meeting with police six weeks ago to discuss the situation but say, since then, nothing has improved
"A lot of this is related to alcohol," Mr Stolz said. "Ask anyone in the community who sees it.'
"The fact is, there is a lack of parental supervision for some of the kids and they are getting access to alcohol in one way or another.
"Some of them are 12 and 13- years-old. We know that and the police know that too. The age of these kids is actually getting younger and younger."
Tweed-Byron police superintendent Michael Kenny said police had confiscated alcohol from at least a dozen young people in the Byron Bay and Suffolk Park areas over the weekend.
"We find quite often the kids are getting the alcohol from their parents," he said.
"We are certainly taking the issues at Suffolk Park very seriously."
Superintendent Kenny said there were no major increases in criminal reports in the Suffolk Park area in the past three months, but said police were investigating a number of serious assaults in the area.