Three men charged over violent Melbourne derby pitch invasion
Three men have been charged over the pitch invasion at AAMI Park that brought the Melbourne derby to a halt on Saturday, leaving four people injured and an estimated $120,000 of damage to the venue.
A 23-year-old Craigieburn man, a 19-year-old Meadow Heights man and an 18-year-old Alphington man have been charged after they self-presented to police stations on Monday.
Tom Glover was concussed when fans stormed the pitch on Saturday night.Credit:Getty
The 23-year-old Craigieburn man was charged after he allegedly struck Melbourne City goalkeeper Tom Glover with a bucket full of sand. He has been charged with violent disorder, discharge missile, intent to cause injury, recklessly cause injury, unlawful assault, entry to sporting competition space, disrupting a match, public nuisance and riotous behaviour.
A 19-year-old Meadow Heights man has been charged in relation to a separate alleged assault on Glover, as well as an alleged assault on a security guard. He has been charged with violent disorder, discharge missile, three counts of unlawful assault, entry to competition space, disrupting a match, public nuisance, riotous behaviour, discharge and possess flare.
Additionally, an 18-year-old Alphington man has been charged in relation to the alleged separate assault on the goalkeeper as well as criminal damage caused to the venue. He has been charged with violent disorder, criminal damage, unlawful assault, entry to competition space, disrupting a match, public nuisance and riotous behaviour.
“All three men self-presented to police stations [on Monday] and have subsequently been bailed to appear at Melbourne Magistrates’ Court on 27 February. The charges come as detectives from the North West Metro Regional Crime Squad continue to investigate the entire incident as part of Operation Astute,” a spokesperson from Victoria Police said.
According to police, approximately 50 flares were lit within the stands and at least three were thrown onto the field. Additionally, bottles were thrown at the Public Order Response Team that responded on the field.
“Police are continuing to trawl through detailed vision of the incidents, and those involved are strongly urged to make themselves known to police immediately.”
Glover required stitches and was concussed, while referee Alex King also sustained minor injuries. A cameraman was also hit by a flare.
The invasion stemmed from Melbourne Victory’s active support area behind the goals and the club is facing heavy sanctions from Football Australia.
Anyone who witnessed the incidents, or who has information or phone vision, is urged to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or log on to www.crimestoppersvic.com.au.
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