Latest News

Back to Latest News back

 

Man jailed for Bibbulmun Track attack

Man jailed for Bibbulmun Track attack
June 26, 2019

A truck driver who attacked two Finnish nationals as they hiked the popular Bibbulmun Track in Perth has been sentenced to eight years and nine months in prison.

The West Australian District Court heard that Matt Lewis Whittaker, aged 37, ran down tourists Queralt Tobarra and Tuomas Tani, both aged 33, as they walked along the track at Paulls Valley on 28th July last year, striking them at a speed of up to 70km/h.

Whittaker then got out of the vehicle and said “I’m going to f**king kill you.”

He hit Tani with a shovel then began choking him and they continued to struggle until Tobarra picked up the shovel and repeatedly struck Whittaker.

A passer-by helped them restrain Whittaker until Police arrived.

The victims, who were visiting and working in Australia, did not know their attacker. They watched the court proceedings on Tuesday via video link from Finland.

Judge Belinda Lonsdale said Whittaker had methamphetamine in his system, showed no remorse for his actions and blamed the victims.

She advised "both of the victims were terrified and believed you were going to kill them."

Tobarra has a permanent bump on her leg due to tissue damage, visits a physiotherapist for severe cervical whiplash and still suffers headaches and pain.

Tani’s two fractured vertebrae have healed but the soft tissue damage remains and he has an inflamed bursa in his right hip.

Judge Lonsdale addded "he has a scar on his forehead, which no doubt will be a constant reminder of the frightening events of that day."

Whittaker was originally charged with attempted murder but pleaded guilty earlier this year to two counts of the downgraded offence of doing an act likely to endanger the life or safety of a person. He was also sentenced for drug and weapon offences and ordered to serve an earlier suspended term for indecent assault.

Whittaker must spend at least six years and nine months behind bars before he can be eligible for parole.

Australian Associated Press

Related Articles

28th February 2019 - Man pleads guilty to attack on Bibbulmun Track hikers

21st February 2019 - Bibbulmun Track walking events cater for all fitness and skill levels

26th September 2018 - Man charged over alleged sexual assault at Adelaide Aquatic Centre

31st July 2018 - Overseas trail walkers attacked on Bibbulmun Track

9th January 2018 - Actor Craig McLachlan accused of indecent assault and sexual harassment during Rocky Horror Show

14th May 2015 - Volunteers ensure longevity of Bibbulmun Track

10th November 2014 - Alcohol-fuelled assaults - what should a hospitality provider do?

6th July 2013 - Guided walks and experiences on the Bibbulmun Track

30th April 2013 - Footy spectator jailed for assaulting umpire


Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?

The news we publish at www.ausleisure.com.au is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.

However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.

Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.

Click here to subscribe.

 

supplier directory

The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.

See the directory see all

TICKETSERV

As of 2018, TicketServ operates as SeatGeek Asia Pacific Pty Limited, part of international ticketing platform SeatGeek. Click here to contact SeatGeek Asia Pacific via their entry in…

read more

Attractions / Entertainment / Events / Sport / Ticketing

 
 

Neptune Benson

Neptune Benson is a manufacturer of high quality water filtration and disinfection products for the recreational, industrial, and municipal water markets. With more than 20,000 installations…

read more

Aquatics / Design / Recreation

 
 

MYRTHA POOLS

Founded in 1961, Myrtha Pools® quickly became Italy’s première swimming pool company, and has since grown into one of the world's leading swimming pool construction…

read more

Aquatics / Design / Play / Waterparks / Wellness

 
 
 

TJS Services

TJS Services is a leading national facility services provider. We deliver quality cleaning, maintenance, construction and facility management services to over 1,500 sites Australia wide.  Our…

read more

Hospitality / Retail / Venues

 
 

QUAYCLEAN

Quayclean are a national cleaning and waste services partner with proven results in the understanding and delivery of cleaning needs and challenges faced by facilities including; major venues and…

read more

Aquatics / Hospitality / Surfaces / Venues

 
 

ELITE POOL COVERS

Since 1989 Elite Pool Covers have designed and manufactured an extensive range of high quality affordable manual,semi-automatic and fully-automatic pool cover systems for the harsh Australian…

read more

Aquatics / Environment / Technology / Venues

 
 

Digonex

Digonex is a leading provider of customised dynamic pricing solutions to clients in arts and entertainment, sport, attractions, cultural institutions and retail sectors. Digonex’s technology is…

read more

Attractions / Entertainment / Sport / Technology / Ticketing

 
 
 
 

get listed with our suppliers directory

Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!

list your business