Volatile scenes erupted at the Perth Children’s Court this afternoon as a big number of family and supporters turned up for the appearance of six teenagers accused of murdering Mandurah man Tauri Litchfield on St Patrick’s Day.
At least seven police officers were at the court to reinforce routine security guards, at one point rushing inside after the boys’ court appearance during a verbal confrontation between the supporters of the charged teenagers and Mr Litchfield’s bereaved family and friends.
Even before the court proceedings began, which were also screened in a second court room to allow for the big number of people attending the brief appearance, tension was apparent in the public gallery and words were exchanged between the two groups.
One of the boys’ supporters had to be reprimanded before the proceedings started and was told to refrain from making any further comments.
Outside the court after the appearance, police dispersed a big crowd of the boys’ family and friends.
The six boys, three aged 14 and three aged 15, are alleged to have attacked Mr Litchfield as he walked home from the Brighton Hotel after attending Mandurah’s Crabfest with his partner and friends on March 17.
Mr Litchfield was found with severe head injuries outside a Pinjarra Road and died in hospital.
The boys, who have not pleaded, appeared in court today on a video link from Banksia Hill detention centre.
Prosecutor Sean Stocks told the court that forensics results and a medical report were still pending. Some prosecution papers had been disclosed this week and also needed further consideration.
Defence lawyers indicated that bail applications would be made for at least three of the boys before their next scheduled court appearance on July 12.Children’s Court president Judge Denis Reynolds requested three days notice of any bail applications, which he said should include an outline of proposed accommodation arrangements and details of responsible adults for the teenagers.