Bendigo police praise Australia Day behaviour

BENDIGO police have praised the good behaviour of the public after a trouble-free Australia Day. 

Senior Sergeant John Dalton said police were more than happy with Sunday's events. 

"We had no reports of major issues," he said. 

"People were well-behaved at Lake Weeroona."

Police said there were no issues with alcohol fuelled violence or anti-social behaviour in the Bendigo region. 

"The general behaviour of people seems to be improving," Senior Sergeant Dalton said. 

Last week Victoria Police said Australia Day was the most violent public holiday of the year in Australia. 

There were 121 non-family violence related assaults on 26 January last year – almost double the number seen on an average day in Victoria. 

On a typical day, there are around 69 assaults across the state.

Deputy Commissioner Tim Cartwright said the figures were alarming for a day that was supposed to be one of the proudest in the nation’s history.

“Australia Day is the most violent of our public holidays by a long shot,” he said. 

“Everyone needs to take responsibility for seeing this day become one where violence escalates.

“We know people want to have a drink or two to celebrate the day with family and friends, but don’t let the situation get out of control. Don’t let it end in violence.”

Mr Cartwright said he was becoming increasingly concerned with fatal “one punch” incidents that the country had witnessed in recent times.

“The nation has seen that it only takes one punch for someone to die or be seriously injured,” he said,

“These are cowardly attacks. They have devastating impacts. They ruin lives. They shatter families."

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