Pie thrower hits Bracks at museum opening

Alan Bradley alanb at SPAMelf.brisnet.org.au
Sat Oct 21 07:22:32 MDT 2000


>From http://www.abc.net.au:
This Bulletin: Sat, Oct 21 2000 10:53 PM AEDT  
 
Pie thrower hits Bracks at museum opening

Victorian Premier Steve Bracks was hit in the face with a cream pie as he
arrived to open Melbourne's new $290 million museum this afternoon.


Victorian Premier Steve Bracks has celebrated a year in government with a
pie in the face. Michelle Fonseca reports.

Having just finished addressing the thousands who had gathered for the
opening celebration, the Premier was about to unveil a plaque at the front
of the museum with the help of two children when 30-year-old Marcus Brumer
leapt over a barricade, throwing a cream pie in Mr Bracks' face.

One of the children was knocked to the ground, as the protester was taken
away by security guards.

The Premier calmed the children and continued the photo opportunity for the
media, still covered in cream.

It is understood the child, Alex, is not seriously injured.

Mr Brumer says he wanted to show the Premier that demonstrations could be
peaceful, unlike those at the World Economic Forum, where he claims police
instigated the violence.

"Sometimes you have to resort to a bit of street theatre to get your point
across."

Mr Bracks, who was visibly shaken, was saying little about the incident.

"I think the incident speaks for itself and I won't be saying anything more
thankyou very much."

Police are investigating, but so far have not laid any charges.

A member of the opening's official party says security had earlier removed
the protester from the crowd.

Kaele Way says there was no security around the Premier when the protester
struck.

"This particular person came with quite a momentum, he was really running
at a pace," Mr Way said.

"It wasn't clear he was carrying anything at that stage, but of course when
he got quicker and closer towards the Premier, he threw what appeared to be
a pie in the face of the Premier.

"I suppose in one way the timing was very clever but it did spoil the
event."

The Melbourne Museum's deputy director James Dexter has defended the level
of security for the opening.

"We in fact boosted our security because we were aware in fact that this
was going to be a greater success than we even believed with the number of
people," he said.

"But with all these kind of things you're trying to give the people a
chance to be part of the celebration - it is difficult, we tried, we put on
extra security and unfortunately this incident has occurred.


Protest

The S-11 group is continuing its peaceful protest outside the Australian
Labor Party state conference in Melbourne.

The group says it will step up its action this afternoon when the Premier,
Steve Bracks arrives.

S-11 members are angry Mr Bracks labelled their behaviour at the World
Economic Forum as fascist and un-Australian and are demanding an apology.

The protesters spent the morning putting their point across to alp
delegates arriving at the Melbourne Town Hall.

Mr Bracks is now expected to face a motion condemning his support of police
during the economic forum at the conference tomorrow.

Comedian Rod Quantock, who claims he was injured during a police baton
charge, is calling on the ALP delegates to take the anger of the community
to the Premier.

"What he said about protesters and his support of the police is completely
indefensible," Mr Quantock said.

© 2000 Australian Broadcasting Corporation






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