Australia

‘Eat a d**k, hippy’: Victoria Police to investigate crude message to climate protesters

A photo of a Victoria Police officer with an indecent message on his body camera has been criticised online.

Victoria Police is investigating after a photo of one of its officers with an indecent message scrawled on his body camera was circulated and condemned online.

The message scrawled on the officer’s camera reads “EAD hippy”.

In urban slang, "EAD" is a three-letter acronym for “eat a d**k".

The picture was taken in Melbourne after a tense and violent week of climate change protests outside the International Mining and Resources Conference.

Victoria Police released a statement late on Friday confirming the image was real and it had identified the officer pictured.

“We are still working to ascertain how and why this comment was on his camera,” the statement read.

“The community can be reassured this is not the type of behaviour we expect from our officers and we are extremely disappointed by the situation.

“This behaviour detracts from what was otherwise a professionally-conducted operation and tarnishes the reputation of all of our officers."

Victoria Police will be investigating the matter further with involvement from Professional Standards Command, according to the statement.

Disciplinary action will be considered, it added.

Dozens of people were arrested as part of the week-long protests outside the International Mining and Resources Conference.

Both police and protesters were injured over the course of the week.

Video of Seven Network journalist Paul Dowsley being pushed by police was condemned online, as was the pepper-spraying of a student journalist.

Neither were part of protests.

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews backed police efforts to bring order to the protests at several points throughout the week.

He lashed demonstrators for their “appalling behaviour" on Wednesday.

“Victoria Police are out there now and they are doing every one of us proud,” Mr Andrews said.

“I will always support the right of every Victorian, if they so choose, to peacefully protest but there’s a big difference between peaceful protest and what we saw yesterday and potentially today.”

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