Police are still on edge after a vicious attack in a north Brisbane park left one person dead and up to 10 injured, saying they fear further violence.
It comes as they revealed they were investigating whether the Zillmere incident, which saw a group of people of African descent set upon another, was in retaliation to a vicious attack in Brisbane’s southwest last week.
Speaking on Monday, Detective Superintendent Tony Fleming said an extensive investigation was underway after the “dynamic” incident at O’Callaghan Park at 5.30pm on Sunday, including preparing for further violence.
“I do hold some concerns the attacks may have been retribution for an attack on September 8 at Redbank Plains, that’s unconfirmed at this stage, but what happened there was a group of people of African descent set upon a man of African descent who suffered significant injuries,” he said.
“I am concerned there is a risk of retribution now (after the Zillmere incident).
“Some words were spoken by some of the people last night in police presence that has led them (police) to be concerned that some within that small group who won’t cooperate with us will seek to solve it themselves.”
A man in his 20s died in the incident from a stab wound, with others suffering significant injuries caused by knives and blunt objects such as baseball bats.
Supt Fleming issued a plea to friends and associates of those involved in Sunday’s attack to do the right thing.
“My message is help us to do our jobs,” he said.
“Most of the people involved aren’t cooperating with us and providing detailed information.
“We would like to say to friends and associates… there’s no doubt people talk and know who might be behind this… you have an opportunity to talk to your elders, talk to police, and let us know who is responsible for this and stop more people being hurt in the community.
“We now need help from community and those close to this to help identify the offenders and prevent further escalation.
“Retribution is not going to solve the problem.”
“We are doing all we can to hold people accountable for this level of violence.”
Police are currently looking at a “number of potential persons of interest and locations”.
Early investigations suggest a group of friends and close associates were congregating at the park, which they did regularly, when they were set upon by another group.
At least 20 people were involved on Sunday, Supt Fleming said.
Queensland Ambulance Services medical director Dr Stephen Rashford said 14 units, including critical care and the High Acuity Response Unit, responded to the incident, transporting nine patients to various hospitals across the city.
“This was a very technically difficult job for all our paramedics,” Dr Rashford said.
“It was dark, there were heightened emotions, and there were a number of people who were critically injured … suffering knife wounds and blunt force trauma.
“We found multiple victims spread across a large distance in the park. This posed a significant challenge to paramedics. There were numerous victims and it was a multi-injury incident.”
Paramedics attempted to resuscitate one man who had suffered critical injuries; however, he died at the scene.
“Our thoughts and prayers go out to all the victims and their families,” Dr Rashford said.
Dr Rashford said the injured were taken to multiple hospitals across Brisbane to “ensure they could get the care they required”.
The football club that calls O’Callaghan Park home, North Star FC, last night issued a statement on the incident, confirming the club would close while police carried out the investigation.
“Unfortunately a non-football related incident has occurred in the O’Callaghan Park precinct this evening where serious injuries have been sustained,” the club wrote in a statement on Facebook on Sunday night.
“Our thoughts go out to those who have been injured and their families.
“The safety and security of our members and the community is paramount. At this stage the club is closed, and we are awaiting further advice from Queensland Police.”
The incident, and reports of increased carjackings in Brisbane, have prompted Opposition Leader Deb Frecklington to release her plans to target the violence should the LNP win the October 31 election.
Ms Frecklington said the LNP would recruit an extra 170 police for Brisbane, and establish new task forces to crackdown on gang violence and carjackings if it wins.
“Labor’s soft-on-crime approach is failing to protect the community,” Ms Frecklington said.
“Enough is enough, we can’t have nurses walking to their car in fear … we can’t have people getting carjacked at gunpoint on their driveway.
“The LNP will ensure our police have the resources and the tough laws they need to do their job and keep Queenslanders safe.”
Ms Frecklington said two new task forces would be established immediately after the October 31 election.