The West

Gatecrashers terrorised partygoers
Balga Soccer and Social Club President Ken Shorto at the entrance of the club where about 20 males believed to be of African descent demanded entry and tried to force their way in. Picture: John Mokrzycki/The West Australian.

Gatecrashers assaulted four people, yelled racial abuse and threw bottles at terrified soccer club members who had barricaded themselves inside a building at Balga last night.

Several young men, believed to be of African descent, tried to force their way into the Balga Soccer and Social Club rooms, where about 100 men, women and teenagers were enjoying an end of season function, about 8pm last night after being refused entry.

Three members were attacked as they tried to stop the gatecrashers, aged about 16 to 25, from getting inside. It is believed none were badly wounded but one was hit in the head with a bottle and the other two were assaulted.

The gatecrashers stopped the members locking the doors of the building and terrified club members stood against a bulletin board they had dragged in front of the doors to stop the violent attackers getting in.

The violent mob threw bottles inside the rooms and then damaged several cars parked outside, smashing windows and kicking in body panels.

Eight police vehicles arrived but the gatecrashers fled to nearby parkland and streets. After patrolling the area and gathering evidence on the damage, police left.

About 15 minutes, several African men, who were linked to the first group of gatecrashers, armed with sticks and bottles tried to force their way into the clubhouse.

One soccer club member was king hit in the jaw as members tried to tell the troublemakers to calm down and leave.

Club members again barricaded themselves inside the building as bottles and other missiles were launched through a gap in the doors.

Police again rushed to the venue and dispersed the troublemakers. They then waited for club members, whose function had finished, to go safely to their cars.

Police are appealing for information to help identify the troublemakers but at this stage, it is believed no one has been charged.

Anyone with any information is asked to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

The West Australian

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