Coraki Golf Club under siege in ongoing battle
THREATS of violence against volunteers, staff and patrons of the Coraki Golf Club are the most recent escalations in an ongoing saga of malicious damage and vandalism to the community resource.
Coraki Golf Club Captain Bob Grasby is urging the youths responsible to take out their frustrations by hitting a golf ball rather than destroy and abuse the volunteer-run organisation.
"Over the last few months damage has been done to this golf club which is starting to escalate and get out of control," he said.
"I would rather see them use the golf course for their own facilities than abuse it."
Mr Grasby said a group of three youths threatened to "spear him" with a flag poll on the golf course last Friday.
"Everyone that's come out here, players, volunteer staff, have been threatened by them at some stage," he said.
Mr Grasby said the latest bout of malicious damage involved the theft, burning out and complete destruction of the club's treasured ute and about $5000 worth of damage.
About a month ago, he said a group of juveniles pulled a knife on some veterans who were playing golf and threatened to stab them.
"It's gotten worse in the last couple of months," Mr Grasby said.
"We have ladies here that won't comeback because they've been intimidated and threatened."
Mr Grasby said the club has been repeatedly broken into, golf carts, flag sticks and markers stolen, sprinklers and control boxes broken, bunkers dug up, glass smashed, fences broken, trees set alight and petrol poured over tables in the barbeque area and set alight.
Toilets have also been trashed with faeces and excrement smeared on walls and the sewer system purposefully blocked up to overflow.
"The damage over the years is astronomical," Mr Grasby said.
"To add it all up, it would be tens and tens of thousands of dollars that we've had to spend here.
"A lot of members are saying now with all this that's happening what's the point in keeping the place open."
Richmond Local Area Command police Inspector Bill McKenna said Coraki police were investigating a spate of malicious damage and minor property offences that had occurred in and around the golf club over the past few months.
"As a result of that, one young person has been arrested by police and investigations are ongoing," he said.
"The type of offences we're looking at are malicious damage and minor theft offences."
Mr Grasby said the club had spent $25,000 making the place look like "Alcatraz" by putting security bars on the doors and windows, only to have juveniles rip off the roof and kick down the fibro wall to steal a few bottles of alcohol.
"We know they're bored and have nothing to do but I have a junior program running," he said.
"I'll teach them how to play golf and they can take any frustrations out by hitting a golf ball."