Ex-cops say they are ‘disgusted’ at the ‘police state’ in Victoria

Horrific moment cop STOMPS on the head of an unmasked man during a dramatic arrest in lockdown Melbourne – as ex-officers slam Premier Dan Andrews for creating a ‘police state’ in Victoria

  • Shocking footage posted online shows police officers kicking a man in the head
  • Six officers swarmed the man as he laid on a median strip in Epping on Sunday 
  • Police said officers were called to reports of a man behaving erratically at 4pm
  • He allegedly assaulted an officer and damaged a police car prior to the incident
  • The arrest has been referred to Professional Standards Command for oversight 
  • It comes as hundreds of anti-lockdown protesters clashed with police in the CBD
  • A man claiming to be a former VIC cop has spoken out against the police state

A horrifying video has emerged showing police officers booting an unmasked man in the head during a brutal arrest in Melbourne.   

Shocking footage posted online on Sunday shows a group of officers chasing a man on to the median strip of a road in Epping in the city’s north. 

Once surrounded, an officer can be seen kicking the shirtless man as he lay flat on the ground, rolling him into a face-down position. 

As the man wriggles in an attempt to get up, a second officer kicks his head down.

The group of six officers then pile on to the man’s back to pin him down before putting him in handcuffs.

Police officers were filmed  (pictured) kicking a man during a brutal arrest in Epping, in Melbourne's north, on Sunday afternoon

Police officers were filmed  (pictured) kicking a man during a brutal arrest in Epping, in Melbourne’s north, on Sunday afternoon

Distressed onlookers watching the skirmish unfold pulled over in their car to film.

‘Are you  f*****g kidding me?’ the driver can be heard saying.

The motorist then yells at the police to stop kicking the man before his passenger urges him to be quiet.

Victoria Police said the incident unfolded after officers were called to Cooper Street to reports of a male behaving erratically about 4.10pm. 

‘Upon arrival the male allegedly became aggressive and damaged a police vehicle whilst attempting to avoid arrest,’ a police spokesperson told Daily Mail Australia .  

‘During the highly dynamic incident a police officer was assaulted and OC spray was deployed before the man was arrested and subsequently taken to hospital for assessment.’

The arrest has been referred to Professional Standards Command.

The disturbing incident came just hours after hundreds of protesters clashed with police during a violent anti-lockdown demonstration at the Queen Victoria Market, in the city’s CBD. 

Victorian police officers arrest a female protester near the Queen Victoria Markets, during a popup anti-mask and anti lockdown protest at the market on Sunday

Victorian police officers arrest a female protester near the Queen Victoria Markets, during a popup anti-mask and anti lockdown protest at the market on Sunday

A sea of police descended on the demonstration, which saw 74 people arrested and 176 infringement notices issued

A sea of police descended on the demonstration, which saw 74 people arrested and 176 infringement notices issued

A police motorcycle rider could be seen knocking an anti-lockdown protester to the ground as tensions escalated over the Victorian government's strict coronavirus restrictions

A police motorcycle rider could be seen knocking an anti-lockdown protester to the ground as tensions escalated over the Victorian government’s strict coronavirus restrictions

Up to 250 residents amassed as tensions escalate over the city’s Stage Four restrictions, which prohibit Melburnians from leaving home for non-essential reasons. 

Protesters chanting ‘Freedom’ and ‘Power to the people’ were outnumbered by officers, with some demonstrators throwing fruit at police after raiding market stalls. 

Seventy four people were arrested and at least 176 infringement notices were issued for breaching the Chief Health Officer directions.  

Police said many protesters were aggressive and threatened violence towards officers, however no members of the force were injured.

‘It was extremely disappointing to see people not just protesting, but putting the lives of other Victorians at risk despite all the warnings,’ a Victoria Police spokesperson said. 

A woman was detained by police as hundreds flocked to Melbourne's CBD to demand restrictions be eased

A woman was detained by police as hundreds flocked to Melbourne’s CBD to demand restrictions be eased 

‘Our investigations into this protest will continue, and we expect to issue further fines once the identity of individuals has been confirmed.’

Footage of violent scuffles and officers on horseback moving through a group inside the market has been posted online.

‘There were a few tense moments when protesters started grabbing fruit and throwing it at police,’ photographer Erik Anderson said from the scene.

Protesters yelled ‘this is not a police state’ and ‘you’ve got to be on the right side of history’. 

Huge crowds of protesters were filmed marching down empty streets in Melbourne, calling for Daniel Andrews to ease the city’s draconian lockdown restrictions.

One man was spotted kicking a police horse as officers attempted to calm crowds hurling abuse at them as they rode through the markets.  

Melbourne remains in a Stage Four lockdown, meaning residents cannot leave their houses without a valid reason, and restrictions are in place to limit movement more than 5km from a person’s home. 

A woman hangs out of a car window near police wearing masks during the anti-lockdown protest

A woman hangs out of a car window near police wearing masks during the anti-lockdown protest

A man appeared to be in pain as officers restrained his arms as he laid on the cement

A man appeared to be in pain as officers restrained his arms as he laid on the cement

Pictures taken at the scene show officers shepherding protesters through the streets and arresting people who do not comply with orders

Pictures taken at the scene show officers shepherding protesters through the streets and arresting people who do not comply with orders

The restrictions remain in place, and both a State of Emergency and State of Disaster, have been extended a further four weeks despite the embattled state only recording 41 new cases and seven deaths on Sunday. 

The latest figures released on Sunday morning take the state’s death toll to 723 and the national count to 810 since the start of the pandemic in late January. 

Leading up to the demonstration, organisers used encrypted phone apps to communicate, in an attempt to avoid police finding out the location of the planned rally, the Herald Sun reported. 

In messages sent to participants, organisers encouraged people to ‘be agile, like water’ and stick together throughout the course of the day.

‘Be ready to swarm the location to assemble. Once we have assembled, we are all safe,’ one of the organisers said.

Police previously vowed to issue more $1,652 fines ahead of Sunday’s protest.

Police arrest a protester during an anti-lockdown protest in Melbourne, Sunday, September 13

Police arrest a protester during an anti-lockdown protest in Melbourne, Sunday, September 13

Mounted police used their horses to break through heavy congestion, moving people along in the process

Mounted police used their horses to break through heavy congestion, moving people along in the process

‘Police had significant prevention activity in the lead up to and duration of today’s which included visiting 90 persons of interest to urge them not to attend,’ a police statement on Saturday said.

‘Our investigations into this protest will continue, and we expect to issue further fines once the identity of individuals has been confirmed.’

‘Anyone thinking of attending a protest can expect the same swift and firm response from police as has occurred today and at previous protests that were in breach of Chief Health Officer restrictions.’ 

Friction between authorities and residents has been heating since Premier Dan Andrews declared a state of disaster and ordered Victoria into lockdown on August 2.  

Footage of violent scuffles and officers on horseback moving through a group inside the market has been posted online

Footage of violent scuffles and officers on horseback moving through a group inside the market has been posted online

One man was arrested after calling out to police and showing them an anti-government sign on Saturday morning

One man was arrested after calling out to police and showing them an anti-government sign on Saturday morning

In response to growing resistance to restrictions, police have stepped up enforcement measures on those caught breaching COVID-19 laws, with videos of dramatic arrests going viral online.

Hours before the weekend’s protest, a young woman was filmed being dragged from her car by police at a COVID blockade in Wallan, 60km north of Melbourne. 

Natalie Bonett, 29, was stopped and told it was against the law to have her phone attached to a car charger which was mounted onto her windshield.

When she refused to state her name or step out of the vehicle, an officer reached into the car to remove her as she screamed and resisted. 

A clip earlier this month featured a pregnant woman being arrested in front of her young children after posting about an anti-lockdown rally online, while another man’s door was kicked down for the same offence. 

An hour before an ultrasound appointment, Zoe-Lee Buhler, 28, was handcuffed on September 2 over Facebook live stream from her Ballarat home and charged with incitement after allegedly organising a protest via social media. 

The heavy enforcements have drawn public scrutiny, including from a man claiming to be a former Victorian police officer, who slammed the Andrews government’s response to coronavirus as ‘disgusting’. 

Footage of violent scuffles and officers on horseback moving through a group inside the market has been posted online

Footage of violent scuffles and officers on horseback moving through a group inside the market has been posted online

Speaking to Rebel News at a Freedom Protest last week, the man said Victoria had turned into a police state and the strict measures were unwarranted.

‘I’m disgusted by the way the police handled these two incidents,’ he told reporter Avi Yemini, reflecting on the viral arrests. 

‘I’m an ex-copper. Coppers can do no wrong as far as I’m concerned, but that is just absolutely beyond the pale. 

‘I didn’t mind the lockdown originally, but now it is just becoming a joke. We feel like the French resistance in World War Two.

‘The whole scenario is just not what it should be.’   

Another mask-wearer was seen being spoken to by an officer while holding a sign that read: 'I am just exercising...my human rights'

Another mask-wearer was seen being spoken to by an officer while holding a sign that read: ‘I am just exercising…my human rights’

A man wears a face shield with Mr Andrews' head on the back while speaking to police at the march

A man wears a face shield with Mr Andrews’ head on the back while speaking to police at the march

The 64-year-old said the force was different when he served in the 80s and 90s because officers would ‘punch on with hard criminals, not people’. 

Based on his experiences working in courts, the man said experts could be hired to say what is wanted by those who employee them. 

The man said he believes heath experts’ advice is being guided by the directives of the Andrews’ government. 

A woman, who said she also an ex-member of the Victorian police force, agreed with his sentiments.   

‘I am also disgusted with the state of affairs,’ she commented on a video of the interview posted online.

‘In particular, the attitude and behaviour of VicPol in this whole sorry saga

‘What a disgrace.’ 

Under the state’s emergency declaration, Victorian police have been granted extraordinary powers, including the ability to seize private property, enter people’s homes and stop them in the street. 

A man, who claims to be a former Victorian police officer (centre), said he is 'disgusted' by how the lockdown has been managed

A man, who claims to be a former Victorian police officer (centre), said he is ‘disgusted’ by how the lockdown has been managed

A woman, who said she also an ex-member of the Victorian police force, said she felt the attitude and behaviour of officers during lockdown has been disgusting

A woman, who said she also an ex-member of the Victorian police force, said she felt the attitude and behaviour of officers during lockdown has been disgusting

On Sunday, Mr Andrews announced an extension of the State of Emergency and State of Disaster in Victoria.

Minister for Health Jenny Mikakos said the extension of the State of Emergency, which will now last until at least October 11, was crucial for the implementation of necessary COVID-safe guidelines. 

‘The State of Emergency ensures we have all the tools we need to fight this virus – keeping all of us safe,’ she said.

Meanwhile Minister for Police and Emergency Services Lisa Neville said it wasn’t an easy decision to make.

‘Extending a State of Disaster is never a decision we make lightly – and it won’t be in place a moment longer than it needs to be,’ she said on Sunday. 

‘We are at a critical point right now. And we have to do everything we can to hold onto the gains we’ve made, which means giving Victoria Police everything they need to enforce the Chief Health Officer’s directions as we keep driving down cases.’ 

The Andrews government on Sunday announced a financial rescue package that will inject up to $1.1billion into small and medium sized businesses that are most affected by restrictions. 

A further $251million will be dedicated solely to support bars, restaurants, pubs, clubs and hotels which have been decimated during the two lockdowns.

The Licenced Venue Fund will provide grants of up to $30,000 to venues, while the government has also waived liquor license fees for 2021. 

What is the difference between a ‘State of Emergency’ and a ‘State of Disaster’? 

State of Emergency

A State of Emergency can be declared when there is a serious risk to public health.

It first came into effect in Victoria on March 16 to give Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton wide-ranging powers to enforce new coronavirus restrictions.  

Professor Sutton had the authority to direct health officials to detain people, force entire suburbs and regions into lockdown or search premises without a warrant if he felt it was necessary to protect the health of the public.

The State of Emergency initially allowed the government to enforce social distancing and mandatory quarantine.  

State of Disaster

While the State of Emergency grants powers to Professor Sutton, a State of Disaster grants additional powers to police and enforcement agencies.

The State of Disaster came into effect on August 2nd and has faced several one month extensions since then. 

To declare a State of Disaster, the premier must be concerned that an emergency ‘constitutes or is likely to constitute a significant and widespread danger to life or property in Victoria’.

A pandemic, plague or epidemic falls into this bracket.

The State of Disaster allows the enforcement of curfews and restrictions of movement within a city.   

  

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Zoe Buhler, 28, was handcuffed in her lounge room in front of her children on Wednesday afternoon and charged with incitement

Zoe Buhler, 28, was handcuffed in her lounge room in front of her children on Wednesday afternoon and charged with incitement

‘For our state to recover, we need our businesses to recover too. As we take our first safe and steady steps towards COVID Normal, this support will help make sure we get through this together,’ Mr Andrews said.

‘We’ll continue meeting with and listening to businesses, so we can do everything we can to support them and their workers.’

From Monday, the city of Melbourne will move from the strict Stage Four lockdown into the first step of the roadmap toward reopening.

While modest, the changes will allow for more time outdoors and social interactions.

Mr Andrews said if numbers were kept low the state could open with ‘real confidence’ and keep them low.

‘You can open up and stay open,’ he said. ‘That is what we want and that is what we will deliver.

Mr Andrews (pictured at a press conference on September 11)  has extended the State of Emergency and State of Disaster for a month

Mr Andrews (pictured at a press conference on September 11)  has extended the State of Emergency and State of Disaster for a month

‘That is what we will deliver in regional Victoria and right across metropolitan Melbourne, not bouncing in and out of lockdowns, but making sure that everything that Victorians have given counts for something and delivers us, as I said, a summer that will be like no other.’ 

People living alone or single parents will be able to invite one other person into their homes.

Mr Andrews said he would allow ‘social bubbles’ even when exercising outdoors, which will now be extended to up to two hours per day – which can be split over two sessions. 

Playgrounds and outdoor fitness equipment will reopen, and Melbourne’s 8pm lockdown has been pushed back to 9pm.  

Regional Victoria will also enjoy the loosening of several restrictions after successfully stemming the spread of the virus.

Up to five people from two separate households will be able to gather in public places, while outdoor pools and playgrounds will also open.

Religious services will be able to go ahead with up to five people. 

MELBOURNE’S ROADMAP OUT OF COVID-19 LOCKDOWN – WHAT YOU WILL BE ABLE TO DO AND WHEN:

Step one: The first step came into effect at 11.59pm on September 13.

Step two: The second step will be implemented when Melbourne has 30-50 COVID-19 cases a day on average over the past 14 days. The aim is for this to come into place on September 28. 

Step three: The move to step three will occur when there is a daily statewide average of five new cases over the past 14 days. The aim is for this to come into place on October 26.

Step four: The move to step four will come when there have been no new COVID-19 cases in the past 14 days. The aim is for this to come into place on November 23.

COVID Normal: After 28 days of no new COVID-19 cases, things will return to normal. 

Step one – 11.59pm on September 13: now in effect

Curfew has been eased to 9pm-5am

People can still only leave home for the four reasons (shopping, exercise, work and care or medical attention)

Public gatherings increased to two people, or a household, for a maximum of two hours

 Singles can have one nominated person to their home as part of the ‘singles social bubble’ 

Childcare and early educators to remain closed

Schools will continue to learn remotely unless they have exemptions

 Adult education to continue to be done remotely, unless they have exemption

 Only go to work if you are in a permitted industry 

– Cafes and restaurants will continue with take away only

– Retail businesses will remain open for essential shopping, with others only operating with click and collect

– Only one person per household can do the essential shopping 

Step two – September 28:

Public gatherings increase again to five people from a maximum of two households

Childcare and early educators can re-open

Schools to continue with remote learning, but Prep to Grade Two and Year 11 and Year 12 students will gradually return to class in Term 4 

 There will be an increase to permitted workplaces

Step three – October 26:

Curfew is no longer in place

There are no restrictions on leaving home

Public gatherings increase to 10 people together outdoors

 A ‘household bubble’ will be introduced, so five people from one house can visit another 

Remote learning to continue, but Grades 3 to Year 11 can gradually return to class

– Adult education to continue to be done remotely, but hands on classes will see a phased return to onsite 

 Work from home is encouraged

– Up to 10 people can eat together at restaurants and cafes, with the majority of tables outdoor

– Retail shops to reopen, with hairdresses operating under safety measures but beauty stores to remain closed

– Real estate agents can conduct private inspections by appointment

– The one person per household limit on shopping is to be revoked 

Step four – November 23:

Public gatherings to increase to 50 people outdoors

 Up to 20 visitors can attend a home at any one time

 All adult education will return to onsite with safety measures in place

– Groups limited to 20 indoors and a maximum of 50 patrons per venue

– All retail stores to reopen, while real estate agents can operate with safety measures and by keeping a record of attendants

Step five – COVID normal:

Public gatherings have no restriction

 There will also be no restriction on visitors to homes

– Phased return to onsite work for work from home workers

  Schools to reopen as normal

– Restrictions on hospitality removed, but venues to continue keeping records 

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