The West

Police chase upstages Premier
The bike rider chased by police. Picture: Ben Crabtree/The West Australian

Police are hunting for a hoon motorcyclist who interrupted an election campaign announcement by Premier Colin Barnett outside Clarkson police station.

Mr Barnett and Police Minister Liza Harvey had just finished their pledge to recruit 720 new officers over four years when the man mounted the kerb, skidded along the station’s front lawn and sped away.

Within seconds police cars started chasing the man, who did a lap around the block and then headed west towards Marmion Avenue from the Clarkson shopping precinct.

As the drama unfolded Mr Barnett and Mrs Harvey continued walking to their Government cars.

The pair had promised to bolster police numbers in WA by promising $282 million to recruit 550 police and auxiliary officers. The balance of 170 officers is from a 2008 Liberal Party pledge which hasn’t yet been fulfilled.

“Our priority is to make the community safer by putting more officers on the beat,” Mr Barnett said.

The motorcyclist was wearing distinctive red Nike shoes and his motorbike had green rimmed wheels.

The WA Police Union said the promise was a “good start”.

The union had made an early election demand for 800 extra officers, with the Liberal promise in effect delivering half that, with 150 of the extra officers to be auxiliary staff.

While Ms Harvey said the Government had not consulted with the union about their promise, union president George Tilbury said the announcement was a welcome investment.

“A commitment needs to be made that police stations will receive the lion's share of additional police officers, given that this is the area most in need,” Mr Tilbury said.

A re-elected Liberal government would also provide $67 million for new or upgraded police stations in Ballajura, Armadale, Canning Vale, Gosnells, Forrestfield, Ellenbrook, Clarkson and Mandurah.


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