Teenagers reportedly bashed, stabbed in Victoria as supposed attackers shouted 'Aussie scum'

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Policemen simulate an arrest during national security day in Nice, southeastern France, October 10, 2009.
Policemen simulate an arrest during national security day in Nice, southeastern France, October 10, 2009. Reuters/Eric Gaillard

Two teenage Australians were stabbed at a party by some gatecrashers. It was partly believed they were attacked for being Australians.

Eighteen-year-old Joel Sarlo was out to celebrate with his friends at a farm when he was stabbed by strangers in Koo Wee Rup, Victoria last week. Witnesses stated that supposed attackers shouted “Aussie scum.”

A gang of 15 strangers was said to be armed with knives. Sarlo was stabbed twice while his friend Matt Dromell was stabbed once. The former said he was attacked while trying to save his mate, who was almost kidnapped. 

Dromell, also 18 years old, told Channel 7 that strangers grabbed his throat, put a knife to his neck and tried to stab him in the stomach. He added that the gang were trying to get him into their car, but they did not succeed. 

Dromell said he dropped to the ground and hid in a stable until they left. He thought he was going to die. “If it wasn’t for my mates who were there thankfully, I probably would be dead,” he confessed. 

Sarlo said he had seen Dromell pushed around and getting punched, so he ran over to help him, only to be attacked by members of the gang. “And then as soon as I did that, about six of them, they just jumped on me and in the midst of it all I got stabbed,” he said.

Speaking with the Herald Sun, Sarlo said his shirt was soaked in blood. An ambulance came to rush him to Dandenong Hospital after stabs to his lower back and side. Two towels were soaked with blood as well. 

A 17-year-old who was supposedly an Iraqi national was arrested while trying to leave the property. He has been charged but released on bail.

Sarlo’s family felt let down by the justice system for the decision. His mother told the Herald Sun that a close family member had been murdered years ago. The suspect was named but charges were never laid. The investigation into the family member’s death continues.

Sarlo’s mother said she was so angry and labelled the justice system a joke. She added that the system has to be reformed.

Victoria Police said Sarlo’s attacker faces multiple offences including unlawful assault, assault with a weapon, recklessly causing injury and intentionally causing injury. The attacker is expected to appear at a children’s court.