An unofficial beach rave party at Wedge Island on New Year's Eve was marred by violence despite attempts by authorities to prevent the same problems seen at the small coastal community the previous year.
Hundreds of revellers travelled to the northern outskirts of the isolated settlement, about 160km north of Perth, for an unofficial beach party, even after last year's organised New Year's Eve event got out of hand.
Organisers of the 2012-2013 event were charged for not seeking the relevant permits and permissions and the case is before the courts.
Witnesses to that event, which was attended by more than 3000 people, told The West Australian the party descended into chaos, with revellers becoming increasingly violent as the night progressed.
On Tuesday, authorities placed a road block at the entrance to the settlement to turn away unwelcome guests.
But despite their attempts, just metres away from where the 2012-2013 event was held, at least 90 cars and 600 people filled the area by nightfall.
People danced in the glow created by the headlights of cars parked in a ring around the party, which was fuelled by music pumped from a ute.
The celebrations took a turn for the worse after midnight when 21-year-old James Dorloff was killed and a man and woman, both 25, were injured when they were allegedly attacked by another partygoer with a machete.
The Wedge Island Protection Association says antisocial behaviour at the island has become more common since Indian Ocean Drive - the road that connects Lancelin to Brand Highway - was opened three years ago, giving those without a four-wheel-drive access to the settlement.
An association spokesman said antisocial behaviour had the potential to escalate quickly at Wedge Island because the area lacked the necessary resources to deal with it.
He made clear the tragic incident had happened outside the settlement and had not involved occupants of the area's 370 shacks, who have faced significant hurdles to keep their relaxed lifestyle. Locals are known to tear down road signs directing road users to the settlement in a bid to keep it to themselves.
"We understand there is increased pressure on local authorities to control the influx of large numbers of young adults who descend on the area, particularly during peak holiday times," the spokesman said.
"The volume of vehicle traffic and escalation in antisocial behaviour throughout the day yesterday were warning signs of the violent incident that followed."
Acting Police Commissioner Steve Brown said many people were refused entry to the settlement on Tuesday because they did not have planned accommodation or a permit to camp.
"The operation saw the numbers in that area reduce somewhat from last year, which is a good thing," Mr Brown said.
"However, large numbers of people scattered across the coastline and events have occurred, as yet undetermined as to what has happened."
A Department of Parks and Wildlife spokesman said that rangers had worked with police to control the crowds at Wedge Island.
Environment Minister Albert Jacob said future planning for the area was already under way before the incident and that would continue.