'Christian boys' denied bail over violent Wollongong CBD attacks

Two friends described in court as “clean living Christian boys” have spent their second night behind bars over accusations they “gratuitously” bashed three men in two separate attacks in Wollongong at the weekend.

The two assaults, the later of which left a man in hospital, are said to have occurred within 20 minutes of each other on Saturday morning.

The first, outside Fever Nightclub at 5am, was allegedly sparked by racial taunts, with accusations the two victims called Jonathan Derek Paul Junior Schwenke and Christian Roma Nau “black bitches”.

The court heard Schwenke, a bartender of Samoan descent who works at Fever, was celebrating a friend’s birthday at the club with Nau, who is of Maori descent.

The pair told police the victims were taunting them for three hours prior to the incident and issued the racial slur as they were getting in a taxi at the end of the night.

Schwenke told police he “snapped” and together with Nau began punching and kicking the victims until one fell to the ground unconscious. Nau allegedly kicked the man twice in the head as he lay motionless on the ground.

The pair left the scene and walked to the Crown Street Mall, where they came across a man sitting on the Church Street steps.

CCTV footage shows brief communication between the trio before Nau allegedly walks behind the victim and kicks him in the head.

Schwenke and Nau then set upon the man, punching, kicking and stomping on his head until he too is rendered unconscious, police allege.

The pair leave the man lying on the ground and make their way to Keira Street, where they are arrested over the first incident.

The court heard police were unaware of the second bashing at the time of the initial arrest, and Schwenke and Nau were released on police bail later that morning.

Meantime, officers investigating the second assault identified Schwenke and Nau as the alleged attackers after reviewing CCTV footage.

The pair was arrested at Fever just before 12.30 on Sunday morning.

In court on Sunday, Registrar Tina McKenna refused bail applications from both men, despite their lack of criminal records.

Their lawyer said the pair, who she described as “clean living Christian boys” had been strongly affected by alcohol that night and were visibly upset when shown the CCTV footage.

Their cases will return to court Monday.

Smartphone
Tablet - Narrow
Tablet - Wide
Desktop