'Set dog on them': Covid deniers 'attack' picnicking mums, kids

·3-min read

Two mums and their daughters trying to enjoy a picnic in Melbourne’s east were allegedly assaulted by Covid deniers.

The women, aged 43 and 51, were with their two 12-year-old daughters at Slater Reserve in Blackburn North on Thursday about 4.30pm when police say they were attacked.

“A man and woman and up to five children believed to be aged between 8 and 15 arrived at the park and began swearing at the 12-year-old girls and removing QR codes from the park fencing,” Victoria Police said.

The 51-year-old mum approached the group and asked them to stop but was met with verbal abuse, police said. Her friend tried to provide assistance but police said one of the girls began kicking at her and trying to remove her mask.

A woman and a bald man are pictured.
Police wish to speak to these two people after two women were allegedly assaulted at Slater Reserve. Source: Victoria Police

The man put the 51-year-old in a headlock, police said and allegedly dragged her to the ground before the group began kicking her.

“Two males came to the aid of the victims but were threatened by the male holding the dog,” police said.

“He verbally threatened the men before setting the dog on to them which resulted in both males being bitten on the hand by the dog.”

The group then fled the park and were seen heading towards the vicinity of Grosvenor Street and Rialton Avenue, police said.

The two 12-year-olds were not physically injured. The four adults were treated by an ambulance.

Jacquelyn, who was assaulted at Slater Reserve, speaks to the media.
Jacquelyn said her assailants tried to cough on her and rip her mask off. Source: Nine News

'They should be ashamed'

Jacquelyn, 51, told Nine News she was the one placed in a headlock. She claims the group mocked her as being “afraid of a cold” and that they tried to cough on her.

"They should be ashamed - they can have their views but they don't need to force them ... or attack people that share different views,” she told the publication.

Alex Kimberley was identified as one of the men who tried to help the women and their daughters until a dog “latched” onto his arm.

Slater Reserve at Blackburn North is pictured.
Slater Reserve at Blackburn North where police say the group was assaulted. Source: Nine News

Police have released photographs of a man and a woman they wish to speak to in relation to this matter.

The man is described as Caucasian in appearance and wearing black track pants with distinctive stripes on the side, a black t-shirt and runners. He had a sleeve tattoo on his left arm and a bald head with a goatee.

The woman is described as Caucasian and was wearing a long black jacket and black pants.

She had long dark hair and aged in her 30’s to 40's.

Anyone with information is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or submit a confidential crime report online.

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