Kings Cross Suffers Violent Night Despite Basically Being A Shell Of Itself

23 November 2015 | 6:35 pm | Staff Writer

Seven people have been charged following a series of brawls on Sunday morning

Sydney's primary late-night entertainment precinct, Kings Cross, experienced an unusually high amount of violence on the streets at the weekend despite the area's widely maligned 1.30am lockout initiative.

As Fairfax reports, seven people have been charged following two separate brawls early Sunday morning, the first when police attempted to intervene in an altercation between two groups of people on Bayswater Road about 2.30am, and another about half an hour later, when patrolling officers "were approached and threatened" by individuals who became crass and violent.

One man was cautioned and banned from the area over the first incident, while the second yielded six arrests, two of which (for a 21-year-old man and a 19-year-old man) were for assaulting police. According to Fairfax, police were called to a third fight, again on Bayswater Road, and again involving assault of an officer.

"It was just the usual, people threatening to physically assault you or do horrible things to your family," police inspector Pat Gooley told Fairfax.

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"It was a very crowded area last night," he continued. "There were two opposing groups involved in the first fight, whether the next fight that happened involved the same people, I'm not sure."

The night of violence is particularly unfortunate given the considerable attention paid to the area's imposed 1.30am lockouts, designed to reduce alcohol-fuelled violence.

While there has been evidence that there has indeed been a 32% reduction in such violence since the laws' introduction in February last year, it is also worth noting that, since the legislation came into effect, 30 businesses in the area have shut down, of which nine were licensed venues — including Oxford Street's Gay Bar, The Lansdowne, Potts Point's The Backroom, The Flinders, and Hugo's Lounge, whose proprietor, Dave Evans, spearheaded a compensation campaign back in August — while foot traffic has seen an estimated 84% decline reduction.