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Teenager arrested after crashing an allegedly stolen car in Southbank

Teenager arrested after crashing an allegedly stolen car in Southbank
Brendan Rees

A teenage girl behind the wheel of an allegedly stolen car has been arrested after slamming her car into another at a notorious Southbank intersection on Tuesday, June 27. 

Police were called to the incident at the corner of City Rd and Power St where an allegedly stolen Mercedes crashed into another vehicle, pushing it into a business shopfront just before 10.30pm. 

Ambulance Victoria confirmed paramedics assessed four people at the scene including a teenage girl who was taken to the Royal Melbourne Hospital in a critical condition, as well as a woman, believed to be in her 20s, who was taken to The Alfred Hospital in a stable condition. 

Two other women believed to be in their 20s were assessed at the scene but did not require emergency treatment or transport.

A Victoria Police spokesperson said it was understood that the Mercedes was involved in a police vehicle ramming in Hughesdale just hours earlier, after crashing into a bus on North Rd about 9pm.

“The female driver failed to stop and reversed into a police vehicle while fleeing the scene,” the spokesperson said. “A second collision with the vehicle was reported in Murrumbeena, where it crashed into a fence on Gerald St.”

Moorabbin Crime Investigation Unit detectives are investigating, and believe a Mercedes was allegedly stolen during an aggravated burglary in Berwick on June 26. 

The Southbank crash, which resulted in a 17-year-old Ballarat girl being taken to hospital under police guard, left onlookers stunned and caused significant damage to both vehicles involved.

Daniel, who was on duty as the concierge of the apartment building ploughed into by the car, described the scene “like a bomb had gone off”. 

“It smashed the window in [of the building], and there was wreckage everywhere,” he said, adding one female was frantic and screaming as police spoke with her. 

“One of the cars was steaming, leaking, and then its horns started going off automatically ... I thought that was going to explode.”

“There were other cars trying to get through, and trucks, so it was quite dangerous.”

Daniel, who asked that his surname not be identified, said CCTV footage showed pedestrians had been about “10 seconds away of being in the path of the car that went into the wall”. 

“Thankfully everyone was okay, I don’t know how anyone wasn’t injured.”

The collision occurred within a month of a $3.8 million safety upgrade being completed at the City Rd-Power St intersection, which was prompted after a truck hit and injured five people in a horrific incident in May 2021.

Southbank Residents’ Association president Tony Penna said he was at home when he heard the two-car crash, and the chaotic scenes that unfolded. 

“It is unfortunate that this incident has occurred straight after the upgrade,” he said.

“If you’re going to be pragmatic about it, bollards always help … you’re not going to say no to that, the more safety the better.”

Southbank3006 community group vice-president Jannine Pattison said the incident served as a reminder that the whole of City Rd needed to be addressed to improve safety.

“I have previously stated the while we are pleased for the recent upgrades, I did not believe it was adequate to protect the safety of pedestrians,” she said.

“Southbank3006 recently met with representatives from the Department of Transport and discussed our concerns.”

“Southbank needs a fully comprehensive traffic management strategy in order to address this road.”

Investigators urge anyone with information, dashcam or who may have witnessed the crash to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or submit a confidential crime report at crimestoppersvic.com.au

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