An estranged father who bashed and stabbed his son to
death at a Melbourne cricket practice session started screaming
"shoot me" when police arrived.
Parents and children realised something was wrong when they
saw 11-year-old Luke Batty collapse while practising in the
nets with his 54-year-old father.
Witnesses called an ambulance to help the boy as junior
practice was winding down at the Tyabb cricket ground, on the
But it became clear to those still at the oval that his
injuries were not an accident when the father threatened
paramedics with a knife, police said.
It is believed the man had struck his son in the head with a
cricket bat before stabbing him on Wednesday.
When four uniformed officers arrived minutes later, the man
shouted "shoot me" and was sprayed with capsicum foam to no
He refused orders to drop the knife and rushed at one the
officers until he was shot once in the chest, police said.
The father then fought with paramedics and police as they
tried to take him to hospital, where he later died.
"We've had an absolute tragedy here," said Victoria police
commander Doug Fryer.
There were no signs of an argument between the boy and his
father before the attack. But police believe the father had
planned the boy's killing and wanted to die in a
He was known to have a violent temper and a history of
Detectives said he lived in Chelsea Heights and would have
needed to drive 30km to get to the Tyabb oval, all the while
armed with a knife.
The boy's mother was at the oval when her estranged husband
killed their son. Rosie Batty has recalled how her son had
even asked to spend five more minutes playing with his
father, and she didn't have any reason to be concerned.
"The only two people who love their son more than anyone is
their mother and father," she told News Corp Australia. "No
one loved Luke more than his father. No one loved Luke more
than me - we both loved him."
Victoria's rollout of stun guns is continuing, but the four
officers at the scene on Wednesday did not have Taser
training or access to the electro-shock weapons, said Police
Association secretary Greg Davies.
Officers used a Taser in Ballarat to stop an armed and
enraged teenager on the same day as the fatal police
"[The officers in Tyabb] were placed in a horrific
situation," Davies said. "What do people expect them to do?
He's already killed his own son and there's potentially
dozens of other children in the vicinity."
Gill Metzen, who knew Luke when he attended the Tyabb
Childcare Centre for about three years, said: "He was just a
bundle of joy, he was a nice little kid."
She said the father was known to have problems and she
believed he was homeless and living in his car for a time.
Luke was in Year 6 at Flinders Christian College, which has
brought in extra counsellors and chaplains.