Father calls for 'coward's punch' law

The father of a man killed outside a Melbourne pub by a king-hit delivered from behind has called for Victoria to introduce the so-called "coward's punch" laws.

Shannon McCormack, 22, died six days after he struck his head on a concrete wall when punched unconscious outside Queens Bridge Hotel in 2007.

McCormack's killer has never been identified, despite several witnesses to the attack and partial CCTV footage.

Coroner Peter White today recommended the Melbourne City Council encourage pubs and clubs to install more CCTV cameras.

He could not establish that excessive alcohol consumption was a factor.

Shannon's father, William McCormack, said he would like to see Victoria adopt New South Wales' one-punch laws.

The law introduced in January, and known as the coward's punch law, imposes a mandatory eight-year jail term for drunk offenders who hit and kill a person.

"I would've liked to see that come in for sure. The coward's punch is really appropriately named," he told reporters outside court.

"The person who hit our son ran up behind him and hit him in the side of the head. He didn't even know it was coming, it was definitely a coward's punch."

One witness to the assault told the inquest the attacker came from behind Shannon and took a two or three step run-up and punched him to the side of his head.

Mr McCormack said he and and his wife, Cheryl, had not expected any surprises in Coroner White's findings, after additional CCTV footage and a police image of the killer released last year failed to lead to a breakthrough in the case.

But he said they had not given up hope of a friend or family member of the thug, or even the attacker himself finally coming forward.

"One day these people involved are going to have kids, get married, how would they like it if it was their child," Mr McCormack said.

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