National

Vic anti-masker gloated to bashed cop

By AAP Newswire

An anti-masker who refused to comply with coronavirus rules allegedly gloated about pulling out a clump of a policewoman's hair after smashing her head into concrete.

The 26-year-old female Victoria Police officer is recovering at home after suffering a concussion in an alleged attack labelled "fundamentally disgusting" and "shameful" by Premier Daniel Andrews.

She and her partner approached a 38-year-old woman who was not wearing a mask about 5pm on Monday at a Frankston shopping centre.

The shopper was asked for her name and warned about a $200 fine, police said.

Instead, she allegedly dragged the young officer to the ground before smashing her head into the concrete multiple times, ripping out some of her hair in the process.

"That's someone who thinks they're above the law," Chief Commissioner Shane Patton told reporters.

"They're not wearing a mask, they're approached and asked the reason why not and then to react like that is just completely over the top."

Victorian Police Association secretary Wayne Gatt described the woman's actions as "reprehensible" and "not human-like", alleging the woman added insult to injury amid the attack.

"The offender had a clump of our member's hair in her hands and said to our member 'what's it like to have your hair in my hands' or words to that effect," Mr Gatt told reporters in Melbourne on Tuesday.

"Most in the community would hear those words and go ... hold your head in shame.

"That's a horrible way to treat first responders on the frontline of a pandemic."

The alleged offender was taken to a police station, charged with assaulting police, recklessly causing injury, two counts of assaulting an emergency worker, two counts of resisting an emergency worker on duty and refusing to state her name and address.

She was also fined $200 for not wearing a mask and bailed due to no criminal history.

The woman will face court at a later date.

The police officer suffered significant head injuries and was treated at Frankston Hospital before being released.

Victoria Police issued 161 fines on Monday to people flouting coronavirus restrictions, including 60 people who were not wearing masks.

There were nine fines issued at vehicle checkpoints, with 22,091 checks carried out.

Mr Patton said on at least four occasions in the past week, police had to smash car windows and pull people out because they were refusing to provide personal details in line with public health guidelines.

Speaking on behalf of his members, Mr Gatt said officers were routinely being disrespected by "smart arses" across the state seeking their "five minutes of fame in front of a camera".

"The time for that has come and gone," he said.

"What we need to do now as a community is band together and support each other and support our police."

Other people fined on Monday include someone trying to buy a car after the 8pm curfew and another who was bored and wanted to go for a drive.