Geraldton Police charge Lawrence Dann for allegedly punching officer twice in Karloo street brawl

Jessica MoroneyGeraldton Guardian
Smoke drifts over Karloo park next to the bushfire.
Camera IconSmoke drifts over Karloo park next to the bushfire. Credit: Liam Beatty/Geraldton Guardian

A police officer was allegedly punched in the face twice in a street brawl and sustained a suspected broken nose while arresting a man who claimed his group was “evening things up” after his son was hit with a baseball bat days before.

Geraldton Police received a call on Saturday reporting about 20 to 30 people fighting on a Karloo street with weapons involved.

Officer-in-charge Senior Sergeant Chris Martin said on arrival, police saw two groups of people actively “screaming threats at each other” about 4.45pm along Solomon Circle and Jacob Place near Karloo Park.

Sen. Sgt Martin alleged one of the main instigators, 45-year-old Lawrence Dann, told police at the scene his son was struck by a bat in a fight days earlier and that his family were there “to even things up”.

He alleged Mr Dann became aggressive towards police during their attempts to defuse the situation.

“Mr Dann was repeatedly requested to cease acting in a disorderly manner until he was advised that he would be summonsed and ordered to leave the area immediately or he will be arrested,” he said.

Sen. Sgt. Martin said as police attempted to arrest Mr Dann, he allegedly ran away from police and hid behind family members.

He said police grabbed hold of Mr Dann’s wrist when he allegedly slipped out of their grip, took a step towards the officer and punched him twice in the face.

During a struggle to arrest Mr Dann, Sen. Sgt Martin said police used pepper spray to subdue a number of family members attempting to intervene.

Police will allege Mr Dann was eventually restrained by four police officers and taken to Geraldton Police Station.

Sen. Sgt Martin said it was believed the police officer suffered a broken nose.

The 45-year-old was charged with serious assault, possessing a prohibited drug, obstructing police and disorderly behaviour in a public place.

He appeared in Geraldton Magistrates Court on Sunday and was remanded in custody to reappear on March 16.

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