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Deer Park stabbing: Tensions high with Instagram videos before fatal fight

Videos of gang members promising revenge and issuing death threats circulated on social media in the lead up to the fatal stabbing of a teenager in Melbourne’s west.

Solomone Taufeulungaki, 15, was allegedly attacked by a group of youths outside the Brimbank Shopping Centre at Deer Park about 4pm on Tuesday.

The teenager died at the scene and Victoria Police arrested six male suspects nearby all of who have since been charged with affray and violent disorder. 

Taufeulungaki’s friends claimed he was ‘jumped’ by a gang called ‘The Brotherhood’ – or simply ‘BH’ – who were allegedly carrying knives and baseball bats.

It is understood tensions had been high between the rival teenage groups in the lead up to his death, with one video on Instagram showing a teen vowing: ‘You don’t want war with us’.

Solomone Taufeulungaki (pictured), 15, was allegedly attacked by a group of youths outside the Brimbank Shopping Centre at Deer Park about 4pm on Tuesday 

While tensions had appeared to be running high, in the aftermath of the stabbing many of the youths who had bragged about gang affiliations posted that they had now 'de-patched'

One youth said the decision came after he realised he or a loved one could easily have been killed

While tensions had appeared to be running high, in the aftermath of the stabbing many of the youths who had bragged about gang affiliations posted that they had now ‘de-patched’. One youth said the decision came after he realised he or a loved one could easily have been killed

Mourners returned to the Brimbank Shopping Centre on Wednesday afternoon to pay tribute to Taufeulungaki

Mourners returned to the Brimbank Shopping Centre on Wednesday afternoon to pay tribute to Taufeulungaki

Taufeulungaki's schoolmates were accompanied by their parents to lay flowers at the scene

Taufeulungaki’s schoolmates were accompanied by their parents to lay flowers at the scene

A steady run of mourners have visited the site throughout the day - including Taufeulungaki's shattered parents - while a GoFundMe page has also been set up to assist them in funeral costs

A steady run of mourners have visited the site throughout the day – including Taufeulungaki’s shattered parents – while a GoFundMe page has also been set up to assist them in funeral costs

Solomone Taufeulungaki, 16, was allegedly stabbed to death by a group of youths at the Brimbank Shopping Centre at Deer Park, in Melbourne's west, about 4pm on Tuesday

Solomone Taufeulungaki, 16, was allegedly stabbed to death by a group of youths at the Brimbank Shopping Centre at Deer Park, in Melbourne’s west, about 4pm on Tuesday

‘You’re going down once you f***ing go one-on-one with us, f***, that’s not going to stop me but,’ the teen said.

‘You know what bro, I’m going to get back at him, I’m going to stab this f***ing p**sy bro. F*** these n*****s bro. 97xBH – you don’t want war with us bro.’

But in the aftermath of Taufeulungaki’s death, several were quick to denounce their potential gang loyalties.

The boy who posted that earlier profanity-filled video told friends he could no longer support the gang.

‘Y’all could’ve done something with your life but you dropped the rugby ball,’ he said.

‘I lost respect for 97 there’s no way in hell I can look into a killas [sic] eyes I pray for the 15-year-old’s family to the deepest of my hear.’

Friends of Solomone Taufeulungaki lay flowers and say a prayer at the site of the alleged stabbing on Wednesday

Friends of Solomone Taufeulungaki lay flowers and say a prayer at the site of the alleged stabbing on Wednesday

A mourner buries his head in his hands next to dozens of floral tributes at Brimbank Shopping Centre

A mourner buries his head in his hands next to dozens of floral tributes at Brimbank Shopping Centre

Others posted that they had also ‘de-patched’ from their affiliated gang, a term most commonly used by members of outlaw motorcycle gangs (OMCGs).

One youngster said he had realised how easy he, or a loved one, could be caught up in an incident like the one that killed Taufeulungaki.

‘My reason being is not because I wanna go join another crew, my reason being is in times like these you realise… damn, that could have been my little brother or sister walking home from school,’ the boy wrote. 

Solomone's devastated parents attended the Brimbank Shopping Centre where their son was killed on Wednesday morning but instead of adding to the rising tensions they called for calm

Solomone’s devastated parents attended the Brimbank Shopping Centre where their son was killed on Wednesday morning but instead of adding to the rising tensions they called for calm

Atunaisa Taufeulungaki collapses to the ground in tears near where his son died as he and his wife Salome prepare to add to the makeshift memorial in honour of their teenage boy

Atunaisa Taufeulungaki collapses to the ground in tears near where his son died as he and his wife Salome prepare to add to the makeshift memorial in honour of their teenage boy

Mr and Mrs Taufeulungaki added a bunch of flowers to the makeshift shrine outside the shopping centre

Solomone's father broke down in tears as he stood at the spot where his son died

Mr and Mrs Taufeulungaki added a bunch of flowers to the makeshift shrine outside the shopping centre, before the couple pledged to forgive those responsible for killing their son

Both the victim and the alleged attackers attended the same school in St Albans, and police and security were at the school gates on Wednesday morning. 

‘It’s all got to do with social media and bullying and things they say online,’ witness Foa Galuega said.  

Victoria Police have now charged six boys aged between 13 and 16 with affray and violent disorder in relation to the teen’s death. 

While there were calls for retaliation against the alleged perpatrators, the parents of the dead boy called for calm and said they had forgiven his attackers.

‘We want our son back home… we don’t need any justice,’ Solomone’s mum Salome Taufeulungaki said tearfully.

Mrs Taufeulungaki and her husband Atunaisa visited the carpark at the shops where their son was killed on Wednesday morning.

But as he walked towards the makeshift shrine set up in their son’s honour, emotions proved too much for Mr Taufeulungaki.

He collapsed to the ground in tears and had to be helped to his feet by his wife.  

Taufeulungaki’s death sparked anger on social media and calls for vengeance, which led to a wild brawl erupting at the crime scene late on Tuesday evening.

As dozens of teens rushed through the police tape, officers were forced to separate the warring groups.

Two officers were injured in the melee and were treated by paramedics. 

Police forensic workers are pictured outside a Melbourne shopping centre after a teenager was allegedly stabbed to death in a brawl

Police forensic workers are pictured outside a Melbourne shopping centre after a teenager was allegedly stabbed to death in a brawl

A police officer stands guard at the crime scene outside Brimbank Shopping Centre in Melbourne's outer western suburbs

A police officer stands guard at the crime scene outside Brimbank Shopping Centre in Melbourne’s outer western suburbs

'Rest In Love Toko. Actually speechless aye, all I know is that I will see you again,' Mape Taufeulungaki (right) wrote alongside a picture with his brother Solomone (left)

‘Rest In Love Toko. Actually speechless aye, all I know is that I will see you again,’ Mape Taufeulungaki (right) wrote alongside a picture with his brother Solomone (left)

His friends claim he had no gang affiliation himself, and was a prominent member of his local Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints church and school community.

Grieving school friends of the teenager returned to the scene outside Brimbank Shopping Centre on Wednesday morning.

Under the watchful eye of police, Corrina Nakoa and a van full of children placed flowers beside a tree near where their mate fell.

‘I just came down to pay my respects. Clearly (the kids) are very distraught and confused. They’re good friends with Solomone,’ she said. 

Some of the children had attended the same church as their friend. 

Grieving school friends of the teenager returned to the scene outside Brimbank Shopping Centre on Wednesday morning

Grieving school friends of the teenager returned to the scene outside Brimbank Shopping Centre on Wednesday morning

Some of the children had attended the same church as their friend

Under the watchful eye of police, Corrina Nakoa and a van full of children placed flowers beside a tree near where their mate fell

Under the watchful eye of police, Corrina Nakoa and a van full of children placed flowers beside a tree near where their mate fell

It is believed the teenager was allegedly attacked by another group of between eight to 10 children just after 4pm

It is believed the teenager was allegedly attacked by another group of between eight to 10 children just after 4pm 

‘He’s a really good, quiet boy. I think it’s really affected our community,’ Ms Nakoa said.

The worried mum expressed fear about how the young victim’s friends will react to his death.

‘I don’t think anyone can kind of comprehend the magnitude of what’s happened,’ she said.

‘I suspect the impact of what’s happened is going to be widespread across the community tonight. Last night I watched the news and I saw the outburst from the family and I think it’s pretty heart wrenching as a mum.’

A friend of the boy alleged he was ambushed outside the shopping centre and his adult friend tried to hold the group back – but was himself threatened when he tried to intervene.

Police remained visible in the car park at Brimbank Shopping Centre on Wednesday morning, where just hours earlier the 16-year-old was killed

Police remained visible in the car park at Brimbank Shopping Centre on Wednesday morning, where just hours earlier the 16-year-old was killed

A group of police officers speak outside the Brimbank Shopping Centre on Tuesday night after the alleged attack. The boy died at the scene and police allege a group of males then ran from the scene

A group of police officers speak outside the Brimbank Shopping Centre on Tuesday night after the alleged attack. The boy died at the scene and police allege a group of males then ran from the scene

Just hours after police taped off the area, a brawl broke out at the crime scene - with dozens of people filmed running through police tape

Just hours after police taped off the area, a brawl broke out at the crime scene – with dozens of people filmed running through police tape

A witness told 7News the youngster was ‘jumped’ by the group who were carrying knives and baseball bats.

Another witness told Nine News that the victim was allegedly stabbed ‘multiple times’ in his chest and stomach area.

Taufeulungaki died at the scene and the group of alleged attackers then fled before being arrested a short time later on Billingham Road, a spokesperson for Victoria Police said. 

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

Pictured: Brimbank Shopping Centre. A friend alleged the 16-year-old was ambushed by the group and an adult friend tried in vain to intervene

Pictured: Brimbank Shopping Centre. A friend alleged the 16-year-old was ambushed by the group and an adult friend tried in vain to intervene

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk



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