Vic Cops Have Copped A Complaint For Pepper-Spraying CHILDREN Watching Soccer At Fed Square

The crowd at Melbourne's Federation Square for the Socceroos game, where Victoria Police deployed pepper-spray on children

A man has lodged an official complaint about Victoria Police’s conduct after cops pepper-sprayed soccer fans in Melbourne’s Federation Square, including his 13-year-old son.

About 15,000 people headed to Federation Square early on Sunday morning to watch the Socceroos play against Argentina in the FIFA World Cup.

A small group of fans reportedly tried to ram through the barricades to get into the venue after it reached capacity at 5am, an hour before the game was due to kick off.

Police said in a statement that they were “forced” to use OC spray on the people who tried to push their way in after two officers were left with minor injuries. However, the pepper-spray also hit 13-year-old Mentone boy Sonny Brickle and two of his young friends who were nearby.

The children were left unable to see because the spray got in their face and eyes, so they had to feel their way to safety by grabbing each other and stumbling around. Fkn heart-breaking to envision.

The boy’s father Trent Brickle said his son’s face, torso and arms were burnt and he was left “in distress”, as you would be if you were just a kid with his mates who suddenly copped a face-full of pepper-spray for no reason.

“His first words to me after it happened were, ‘Dad, please don’t be mad, but I’ve been pepper-sprayed by police’,” Brickle told The Age.

“I know police were trying to manage a large crowd, but they’re 12 and 13-year-old kids. To be pepper-sprayed in the first instance is inappropriate.

“The most disappointing thing was that no-one helped. Victoria Police members didn’t help the kids, so it was up to bystanders to just sort of go over and see if they were OK.”

Why am I not surprised? Just another example that police don’t exist to serve and protect, actually.

Brickle said he has lodged an official complaint of misconduct against Victoria Police.

Two teenagers in the crowd at Federation Square were also sent to hospital with burns after fireworks were set off in the crowd and flares were thrown at the big screen. However, aside from these incidents, the crowd was said to be mostly well-behaved.

“We saw crowds and families gathering here from quarter-to-five in the morning, so well-behaved, coming together as a community to watch their national team,” Victorian Tourism, Sports and Major Events Minister Steve Dimopoulos said.

“The Socceroos did us so extraordinarily proud … They will have a hero’s welcome when they come back to Australia.”

The Socceroos lost to Argentina 2-1.