Teen charged after shocking juvi shopping centre brawl

DFO shoppers were shocked to be confronted by up to 20 juveniles throwing rocks, wielding a knife and attacking security guards on Sunday afternoon.

At about 1.15pm at the Coffee Club entrance to the Mulgrave Rd shopping centre a witness described a group of youths aged between 10-13 lifting push bikes above their heads and throwing chairs in an altercation with two centre management security staff.

A shopper at the scene, who asked not to be named, was caught in the middle of the disturbance and became trapped inside the centre until police arrived at the scene.

A shopper at DFO was caught in the middle of an altercation between a group of youths and centre security yesterday at 1.15pm.
A shopper at DFO was caught in the middle of an altercation between a group of youths and centre security yesterday at 1.15pm.

"I tried to get out of the doors, you can't get involved if you do you could get stabbed, these are 10-year-olds," he said.

"Security guards were kicked to the ground and it was extremely dangerous."

Police confirmed a security officer suffered a minor knee injury and a 14-year-old Westcourt boy had been charged with one count of go armed to cause fear.

Police allege the teen threatened a 12-year-old boy at about 1pm at the Westcourt shopping complex before the boy's friends came to his aid.

A fight broke out between about 10 youths, eight boys and two girls, aged between 10 and 14, police said.

Security officers intervened and police arrived a short time later, taking the boy into custody.

Living in Cairns for 40-years the Manunda resident shopping at the DFO on Sunday said he had never seen anything like it.

"They are just targeting the shopping centres, you can't go to Raintrees, knife attacks in Cairns Central, the workers at DFO are frightened, this town has got a bad smell," he said.

"I have never heard anything on this scale here before in Cairns.

"This town has gone to sh*t and we have three State Government politicians that say nothing and do nothing.

"I have been following it with complete disbelief."

A spokesman of Sentinel Property Group as DFO Cairns owners said the incident was being investigated.

"Fortunately, no shoppers or retail staff were injured. There were two security guards working at the time and they were assisted by police," he said.

"We will be looking into ways to improve our security presence at the centre and are working with local police to ensure this type of incident does not reoccur.

"Our security team at DFO Cairns are very proactive and focused on the safety of our customers and tenants."

The 14-year-old charged on Sunday will be dealt with according to the provisions of the Youth Justice Act 1992.



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