Police Accused of Using Excessive Force to Shut Down Sydney Beach Party

December 26, 2017 Updated: December 26, 2017

Police have been accused of excessive force dealing with a rowdy drunken Christmas party involving thousands of backpackers on a Sydney beach.

Concern over police conduct has been raised after a video showed a male police officer violently pushing several women to the ground, two of whom landed on hard road.

According to media reports, some party goers then threw bottles at police.

Two women have been arrested – an Irish and a British national – and they will face court next month. Police allege the women threw bottlers at the police officers.

The incident occurred after some 3,000 rowdy party goers were asked to leave Little Bay beach in Sydney’s south east. The beach is a non-alcoholic drinking zone and the event was also unauthorized.

Party goer, Becky Brown said the event on the beach wasn’t ‘out of hand’ until the police arrived.

“I witnessed with my own eyes a police man push and punch a girl in the face then pepper spray her!!” Brown wrote on Facebook.

“That’s why they had two bottles of alcohol thrown at them, not one of the bottles hit the policemen. I can’t believe how this has been portrayed. Police are supposed to make you feel safe and protected,” she said.

She added that she had never been as scared as she was when the “police were punching girls and rugby tackling them!”

Other party goers said police used batons and pepper spray on the party goers.

Police have denied the use of inappropriate force.

“My officers were on the receiving end of some alcohol-fueled violence and it was dealt with swiftly in order to bring the matter under control,” Superintendent Karen McCarthy told reporters on Tuesday.

“The people at the party were intoxicated, they were obviously in a festive mood and the majority of people were compliant with police actions, however, there was a small, isolated incident,” said McCarthy.

She said that three police officers were injured.

Local resident Mark Rear, who watched things get out of hand, blamed it on alcohol.

“People were throwing beer bottles and everything. The cops were getting into-it with the pepper spray. It was just crazy. Weirdest thing that I’ve ever seen at Little Bay,” Rear said.

But he said there was no real violence until the police got out their pepper spray and started using their dogs.

“And that’s when the mood just switched. It was like night and day. They turned pretty ugly pretty quick, both parties and it wasn’t very nice at all,” he said.

It took five council workers three hours to clean up the mess the party goers left on the beach, reported 7 News.

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