Missing woman found – Lake Macquarie

Police have located a woman missing from the Lake Macquarie area.

The 28-year-old woman was last seen driving a vehicle in the Caves Beach area about 9.30pm on Monday (14 September 2020).

Officers from Lake Macquarie Police District were notified when she later failed to return home.

Following inquiries and a public appeal, the woman was located safe and well at her Caves Beach home just before 5am this morning (Wednesday 16 September 2020).

Police would like to that the media and the community for their assistance.


Officer charged – Northern Region

A police officer has been charged over an alleged domestic-related incident earlier this year.

Following an investigation, the 48-year-old woman, a senior constable attached to a command in the Northern Region, was arrested at Belmont Police Station about 11.30am yesterday (Tuesday 15 September 2020).

She was charged with wound person with intent to cause grievous bodily harm, and reckless wounding (DV).

The charges relate to an alleged domestic-related incident involving a 45-year-old man at a Newcastle home on Monday 27 July 2020.

She was granted conditional bail and is due to appear at Newcastle Local Court on Thursday 24 September 2020.

The officer is currently on long term leave.

Woman charged following alleged aggravated robbery – Cessnock

A woman will reappear in court today charged after information was uncovered during an investigation into ram raids in the Hunter Region earlier this year.

Strike Force Emirs was established by the State Crime Command’s Robbery and Serious Crime Squad to investigate ram raids on two petrol stations in the Lake Macquarie area in March this year.

In the early hours of Tuesday 3 March 2020, cars were used to force entry into petrol stations in Wyee and Fennell Bay, where cash and cigarettes were stolen.

Attempts were also made to remove an ATM, but they were unsuccessful.

Last month following inquiries, strike force detectives arrested and charged three men – aged 18, 23 and 25 – who remain before the courts.

After uncovering information during the investigation, police arrested a 20-year-old woman at Cessnock Police Station about 10.15am on Wednesday 8 July 2020.

She was charged with steal motor vehicle, aggravated robbery, drive motor vehicle during disqualification period and destroy property in company use fire etc.

Police will allege the woman drove a stolen Audi Q5 following a robbery at a Cessnock home, where an 83-year-old man was assaulted. The Audi was later found destroyed by fire at Bellbird Heights.

The woman appeared at Cessnock Local Court the same day, where she was granted strict conditional bail to reappear at the same court today (Wednesday 16 September 2020).

Investigations under Strike Force Emirs are continuing.

Appeal to locate missing woman – Lake Macquarie

Police are appealing for public assistance to find a woman missing from the Lake Macquarie area.

Jasmine Towers Hammond, aged 28, was last seen driving in a red Jeep Wrangler with NSW registration JJ5AS in the Caves Beach area about 9.30pm yesterday (Monday 14 September 2020).

Officers from Lake Macquarie Police District were notified when she failed to return home.

Police and family have concerns for her welfare.

Jasmine is described as being of Caucasian appearance, of medium build, about 160cm tall, with long blonde hair and has a tattoo on her left bicep and one her inner left forearm. She was last seen wearing a red blouse and blank pants.

Anyone with information about her whereabouts is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

Share your Newcastle night-time economy experiences

City of Newcastle is calling on the community to share their experiences of the city at night as part of an upcoming trial to extend the trading hours of 26 small bars and restaurants.

Council voted unanimously to support a trial to extend the trading hours of restaurants in the city until midnight and to 2am for small bars, as first proposed in the City of Newcastle’s After Dark Strategy, also unanimously adopted in 2018.

Twenty-six small bars and restaurants have opted into the trial as part of efforts to grow the night-time economy and support the hospitality industry’s recovery from the impact of COVID-19 related restrictions.

City of Newcastle’s Newcastle After Dark 2018 – 2022 strategy is a plan for creating a safe, vibrant and diverse $1.36 billion night-time economy.

The strategy highlights that growth of venue diversity is paramount to increasing the appeal of Newcastle to broader demographics who are currently not catered for compared with competing regional destinations.

Newcastle Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said community feedback is an important component of the trial; providing invaluable local baseline data to evaluate its impact.

“The Newcastle Night-time Economy trial will allow for an evidence-based understanding of the community’s needs.

“We invite the community to have their say on how they think more diverse entertainment options could be created in our city.

“The hospitality and creative industries have struggled in the wake of COVID-19 with job losses, income reduction and loss of revenue because of the impacts of Public Health Orders, restrictions to venue capacities and a general reluctance for people to attend public places.

“We hope to see a positive outcome from the trial for these industries through increased night-time economic development, cultural participation and activation in our City.”

Visit Newcastle.nsw.gov.au/yoursay to learn more and take the survey.

Statement Regarding Newcastle Maritime Museum Society

City of Newcastle is aware that an Annual General Meeting of the Newcastle Maritime Museum Society (NMMS) has been called for 2pm today (15 September 2020).

The NMMS Board has proposed a motion that the Society dissolve.

It is a similar resolution to that successfully passed by NMMS members on 21 May 2018, which was ultimately not enforced by either the former or current Board.

Over the past 18 months the Lord Mayor and or CEO have met on multiple occasions with former NMMS President Peter Morris, as well as NMMS Foundation Director Jeanne Walls, the Maritime Union of Australia, Hunter Workers, MUA Veterans’ Committee, among others.

Further, in July the Lord Mayor and CEO agreed to meet with NMMS Board member Professor Howard Dick. Prior to this meeting occurring, Professor Dick resigned from the Board of the NMMS. The meeting went ahead with significant progress made on a way forward.

Through this meeting and subsequent discussions with Professor Dick, City of Newcastle has offered the following:

  • Should the NMMS elect to dissolve, City of Newcastle will work with a liquidator on the purchase of a number of items from the NMMS collection.
  • Proceeds from the sale of these items will be used by the liquidator to address debts owed to proven creditors of the NMMS.
  • City of Newcastle will exhibit the purchased items at the Newcastle Museum as part of a permanent maritime exhibition.
  • City of Newcastle will participate in a Working Party to determine whether a suitable waterfront site for the establishment of a Maritime Museum can be identified. City of Newcastle will not chair the Working Party. Any cost associated with the Working Party or resulting from actions of the Working Party will not be borne by City of Newcastle.
  • Should a suitable site be identified and leased for 25+ years, City of Newcastle will reasonably consider a request for the transfer of any purchased items formerly belonging to the NMMS, at a cost of $1. This consideration will also be dependent on the request confirming the group/ organisation has secured sufficient working funds for both the construction of a Museum as well as operational expenditure for a minimum of 10 years. A separate lease for a minimum five years must also exist for the storage of the collection.

Since the dire financial situation of the NMMS became known three years ago, City of Newcastle has repeatedly stated its support for the collection to remain locally owned. However, all discussions with the current and previous Board have stipulated that the NMMS first resolve its extensive list of creditors. This task remains outstanding.

In recent months City of Newcastle has been contacted by numerous people identified on a list of creditors compiled by the NMMS. Many have provided copies of invoices for services rendered which have not been paid, despite continuing assurances by the NMMAS of future payment. Each creditor has stated in writing that they have not waived their claim for payment.

Given it is clear a significant number of creditors remain unpaid, and the NMMS has just several thousand dollars of working funds, City of Newcastle supports the NMMS’s proposed motion to dissolve.

The demise of the Newcastle Maritime Museum is a reminder of the costly nature of operating, curating and maintaining a museum, and why City of Newcastle’s position remains that the best way of ensuring local maritime items are available to the public, is via Newcastle Museum.

Two men charged following pursuit – Hunter Region

Police have charged two men – including a driver disqualified for life – after a pursuit in the state’s Hunter Region yesterday.

Just before 10am (Sunday 13 September 2020), officers from Port Stephens-Hunter Police District attempted to stop a Mitsubishi Magna sedan on Avery Street, Rutherford.

When the driver allegedly failed to stop, police commenced a pursuit of the vehicle.

The pursuit continued through Rutherford, before it was terminated due to safety concerns.

The Mitsubishi stopped near bushland south of Scott Street, Weston, before the occupants fled into bushland and were later picked up by a woman in a Toyota sedan.

With assistance from PolAir, police located the driver – a 38-year-old man – and his passenger – an 18-year-old man – at a home on Teece street, Weston.

Upon arrival, the two men allegedly fled the scene before officers commenced a short foot pursuit.

The driver was arrested a short distance away after a short struggle. His passenger was also arrested nearby after he allegedly tried to assault a senior constable.

Both men were taken to Maitland Police Station.

The 38-year-old was charged with a number of offences including:

• Two counts of police pursuit – not stop – drive dangerously (2nd offence)

• Drive motor vehicle during disqualification period (2nd offence)

• Use class A vehicle with unauthorised number plate affixed

• Drive recklessly/furiously or speed/manner dangerous (2nd offence)

• Resist officer in execution of duty

• Goods in personal custody suspected being stolen

• Possess/attempt to prescribed restricted substance

• Custody of knife in public place

He was refused bail and is due to appear in Maitland Local Court today (Monday 14 September 2020).

Police will allege in court that the man had been disqualified from driving for life in January 2000.

The 18-year-old was charged with resist officer in execution of duty, and assault officer in execution of duty.

He was granted conditional bail to appear in Maitland Local Court on Wednesday 7 October 2020.

Inquiries are continuing.

Appeal after police car rammed and carjacking – Lake Macquarie

Police are appealing for public assistance after a police vehicle was rammed and a car was stolen – with the driver still inside – in Lake Macquarie today.

Just before 2.30pm (Monday 14 September 2020), officers from Lake Macquarie Police District commenced a pursuit of a Mercedes after the male driver ­failed to stop on Regents Street, Bonnells Bay.

A short time later, officers terminated the pursuit on Fishery Point Road, Bonnells Bay, due to safety concerns after the driver rammed their vehicle. The officers were uninjured.

Police have been the man then abandoned the Mercedes, before threatening the driver of a white Hilux utility and stealing the vehicle with the man – aged in his 20s and wearing a high visibility vest – still inside.

Officers from Lake Macquarie Police Area Command, with assistance from PolAir and the Dog Unit, have commenced a search.

As part of inquiries, police are appealing for anyone who may have seen the vehicle to contact them.

It’s described as a 2019 white Toyota Hilux utility with registration EGR36C and ‘CDA Group’ written in green and black on the side.

It was last seen driving on Grand Parade, Bonnells Bay, heading towards Fishery Point Road about 2.40pm.

Police would also like to speak with a man who may be able to assist with their inquiries.

He is described as being of Caucasian appearance, aged in his mid-20s, with short dark hair, and a medium build. At the time, he was wearing a dark grey shirt and long black pants.

Appeal to locate wanted man – Lake Macquarie

Police are seeking public assistance to locate a man wanted on an outstanding warrant.

Adam Gilham, aged 27, is wanted on a revocation warrant.

Officers from Lake Macquarie commenced inquiries into his whereabouts and are appealing for public assistance.

Gilham is described as being of Caucasian appearance, with short dark hair and a medium build.

Police have received information that he was last seen at Bonnells Bay in Lake Macquarie today (Monday 14 September 2020) about 2.30pm.

Anyone who sees him is urged not to approach him but instead call Triple Zero (000).

Anyone with information about this incident is urged to contact Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000 or https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au. Information is treated in strict confidence. The public is reminded not to report crime via NSW Police social media pages.

Five people charged following alleged break-in at Hunter Valley winery

Five people have been charged following an alleged break-in at a Hunter Valley winery last night.

About 6.20pm (Monday 14 September 2020), an alarm was activated from inside a winery located on Hunter Street, Muswellbrook.

Officers from Hunter Valley Police District responded and found two vehicles parked outside with boxes of wine nearby. During an external check of the property, police heard voices and saw torch lights inside.

Officers entered the building and found a man in the barrel room. The 27-year-old was arrested and taken outside where a further three people – a 23-year-old woman and two men, aged 23 and 33 – were also arrested

All four people were taken to Muswellbrook Police Station.

Following inquiries, officers arrested a fifth person, a 22-year-old man, just before 9.30pm at a fast food restaurant in Muswellbrook. He was also taken to Muswellbrook Police Station.

All five were charged with aggravated break, enter and steal, enter inclosed lands, and malicious damage.

They will appear at Muswellbrook Local Court on Monday 26 October 2020.