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Top cop says there were ‘flare ups’ as ‘out of control’ crowds swarmed St Kilda last night

Neil Mitchell
Article image for Top cop says there were ‘flare ups’ as ‘out of control’ crowds swarmed St Kilda last night

As crowds flocked to the beach in last night’s balmy weather, the hottest since February, top cop Shane Patton says there were “public order issues” at St Kilda.

3AW caller David said thousands of people remained on the beach late into the night, and many weren’t wearing masks or social distancing the beach was like the infamous Venice Beach “on steroids” last night.

“It was just out of control, I’ve never seen anything like it,” he told Neil Mitchell.

“You’d be lucky if two per cent had masks on.”

Chief Commissioner Shane Patton said there “were flare ups throughout the night”, and one person resisted arrest.

“We had large crowd build ups.

“There were public order issues.

“That’s concerning.”

Operation Summersafe, the annual public safety blitz focusing on Melbourne beaches, is under way.

But Mr Patton says he’s “not sure” if there were enough police on the beach last night, and he is seeking further details on what resources were deployed.

“People shouldn’t be scared, shouldn’t be worried and we should not be describing St Kilda beach like Venice Beach,” he said.

Press PLAY below for more.

Image: Darrian Traynor / Getty

Neil Mitchell
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