Good morning central Victoria!
We’re in for a mostly sunny day - Bendigo 22, Maryborough 21, Castlemaine 20, Kyneton 19, Redesdale 21, Echuca 23.
Catch up on news here:
Former officer sold fake police ID’s online, court told
An undercover operation has led to the arrest of a former police officer living in Castlemaine accused of selling fraudulent police, airport and maritime identification to criminals on the darknet. Read more here.
Hit-and-run accused appears in Bendigo court
The police case against a North Bendigo woman charged in relation to the alleged hit-and-run death of a woman in Huntly could be resolved by the end of the year, a court has been told. Read more here.
Guilty plea to Samantha Kelly murder
One of the three housemates accused of killing Kangaroo Flat mother-of-four Samantha Kelly has pleaded guilty to her murder. Read more here.
Police charge man with 59 offences after two-week Bendigo crime spree
A man facing 59 charges for a range of alleged driving offences across Bendigo in the last two weeks has appeared in court. Read more here.
Hundreds of spiders raised in letterbox
It is the stuff of nightmares for most people. You open your letterbox and a large spider rears aggressively on its hind legs as hundreds upon hundreds of its babies swarm in a seething mass of fangs, bulging black eyes and long, hairy limbs. Read more here.
Baird, Walls to leave Golden Square
Golden Square will field a new-look side in 2017 with two more premiership stars leaving the club. Read more here.
State of the Nation
Need a national news snapshot first thing – well, we have you covered.
► ORANGE, NSW: Food shortages have led to a crisis in baby bats needing to be rescued in the Central West after their mothers have died from starvation. Wildlife workers said bats were fleeing their homes in Sydney and the coast to fly west in a desperate search for food after storms, deforestation and changing weather has led to less flowering eucalypts and fruit trees this year. More here.
► ALBURY-WODONGA: ELLA McMahon is one of the few tweens told to break stuff. She can smash up a table-full of tiles with a hammer in just a couple of minutes. The Howlong schoolgirl, 9, learnt to make mosaics in art therapy at The Royal Children’s Hospital in Melbourne, where she spent most of 2016 undergoing treatment for cancer. More here.
► ILLAWARRA, NSW: The man accused of murdering missing schoolgirl Quanne Diec has led detectives through bushland in Bulli Tops in the search for her remains. Vinzent Tarantino, 49, was charged by police on Sunday, almost two decades after Quanne, 12, was plucked off a Granville street. More here.
► SOUTHERN HIGHLANDS, NSW: The brainchild of a former Highlander, Krabooz hermit crabs, is set to take over the world. Anthony Torr, who grew up in the Highlands, is the creator of The Krabooz brand which makes pet ownership fun and engaging for children. More here.
► SUTHERLAND SHIRE, NSW: The director of clinical services at St George Hospital, Dr Martin Mackertich, says he has been suspended from his position. Dr Mackertich said a memo sent by administrators to hospital staff, stating he was “on leave" was wrong. More here.
► HUNTER, NSW: THE defrocked former Anglican dean of Newcastle, Graeme Lawrence, has stared down his accusers from the witness box for a second day, denying any sexual improprieties of his own, and claiming next to no knowledge of anyone else’s. More here.
► TAMWORTH, NSW: A 13-year-old girl found by police driving a car on a main road won’t face charges because of her young age. Highway patrol officers were patrolling Tingha Rd at Gilgai about 11am when they spotted a silver Holden Commodore travelling west in a 100km per hour zone. More here.
► LAUNCESTON, TAS: Four-month-old identical twins Dyson and Lucas will each undergo surgery after they head to Hobart with their parents on Thursday. Lucas was born with a cleft lip which will be repaired. Little Dyson’s condition is more severe, as he has a cleft lip and palate and will need multiple follow-up surgeries. More here.
► JIMBOOMBA, QLD: Community action group GetUp has called on Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and the Federal government to take urgent action on Climate Change and end Australia’s reliance on coal. More here.
► BUSSELTON, WA: Volunteer firefighters from the Busselton and Margaret River region, Catterick and Northcliffe were sent to the Lower South West and Great Southern to help emergency service workers during a bushfire last week. More here.
► MANDURAH, WA: The state’s construction union has slammed working conditions at the Mandurah Forum redevelopment amid shock claims the site is a “catastrophe” waiting to happen. More here.
► 13-year-old Tailem Bend girl Tyla Jones’s face will appear in homes across the county as she was asked to model in a Target catalogue, due to be released today. Tyla was born with cerebral palsy and diagnosed at age two. More here.
► PORT LINCOLN, SA: LUKE Davidson of Port Lincoln Hotel is the region’s highest fundraiser for this year’s UGLY Bartender of the Year competition. Mr Davidson raised more than $11,000, closely followed by Ebonie Gardener at the Boston Hotel who raised more than $7000. Ryan Voight at the Boston Hotel raised more than $1000. More here.
► A man who stabbed his friend to death, wrapped his body in a doona, and stuffed it into a car boot has been found guilty of murder. Zhen Fang, 38, had admitted to killing Ting Huang in 2014, but the jury had to determine whether he was suffering from a substantial impairment of mind at the time to reduce his culpability from murder to manslaughter. More here.
► Australian fast bowler Jackson Bird is back for his first appearance in the baggy green in nine months after being recalled for the third Test against South Africa. More here.
National weather radar
► An Australian teenager, thought to be a school leaver in Bali, could face up to 12 years in jail after he was allegedly caught with a small packet of white powder by security guards at a Kuta nightclub. More here.
► J.K. Rowling has tantalised fans with hints on Twitter that her new film series, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, could end with the infamous battle between Albus Dumbledore and dark wizard Gellert Grindlewald. More here.
On this day
1642 – Dutch explorer Abel Tasman discovers Van Diemen's Land (Tasmania)
1940 - Nazis closed off the Jewish ghetto in Warsaw, Poland. Over the next three years the population dropped from 350,000 to 70,000 due to starvation, disease and deportations to concentration camps.
1950 - The musical "Guys and Dolls" opened.
1969 - Apollo 12 landed safely in the Pacific Ocean bringing an end to the second manned mission to the moon.
1991 - Freddie Mercury of Queen died of AIDS complications at the age of 45.
Early member of the Beatles Pete Best and actor Katherine Heigl celebrate birthdays today.
Faces of Australia: David Kennedy
IT IS one o’clock on a Thursday afternoon and David Kennedy is doing what he has done each week for 30 years.
He is putting his headphones on, checking that the CDs are loaded and starting his two-hour classical music radio show on community radio station Phoenix FM.
This month David is celebrating 30th anniversary.
He often chooses a theme for his shows, recently it was Halloween.