Baseball bat used to bash man, 52
A MAN who claimed he was bashed with a baseball bat at Ocean Shores on Wednesday was in a serious but stable condition in Princess Alexandra Hospital in Brisbane last night.
The 52-year-old, who police have not yet named, staggered into the Billinudgel Hotel just after 3pm and told the publican, Ken Barnham, he had been assaulted by another man.
According to police, Mr Barnham drove the man to his home in Gilba Avenue, Ocean Shores, where the man suffered a seizure and lost consciousness.
An ambulance was called and the man, suffering a fractured skull, was taken to the intensive care unit at Tweed Heads Hospital.
He was transferred to the Princess Alexandra Hospital and spent the night in an induced coma.
Police from the Tweed/Byron Local Area Command attended the address, where they found the man’s car which had blood smears on it.
They also found a pool of blood on grass nearby.
Police set up a generator to light up the house and surrounds for a search until midnight on Wednesday. Forensic officers examined the property yesterday morning.
Mr Barnham declined to answer questions about the man’s identity, except to say that he was a regular at the hotel.
It is believed that two men, who may be related, and one of their sons, lived at different times at the house in Gilba Avenue.
A Jack Russell terrier named Hawksbury was owned by one of the men.
The timber house is surrounded by trees down a steep path.
It has a rundown look, despite three brightly-coloured rugs hanging out over the front veranda.
The house is a five-minute walk from the back of the property – a route which it is understood the occupant often took.
A neighbour said the main occupant was a man named Tony.
She believed he had had family members staying with him for the past few weeks.
Tony was a regular at the pub and had lived at the address for a long time with Hawksbury, she said.
He was ‘very much a recluse who liked to keep himself to himself’, the neighbour said.
“He said he liked all the trees around his property. He enjoyed the recluse lifestyle.”
The area around the house was ‘quite eerie out there last night, with all the lights and activity’, the neighbour said.
“Clearly something had happened.”
Police knocked on the door of another neighbour, Marcus Gander, about 6pm on Wednesday.
Mr Gander said he had heard a couple of loud screams, or yelps, from the next-door property earlier in the day, but thought it could be children or teenagers skylarking.
Police said last night that they believed this was not a random act of violence.
Superintendent Michael Kenny asked the community ‘for any information that might help us with this’.