Greater Western Sydney Giants star Toby Greene’s father claimed heavy-handed police had ‘racially targeted’ him after he was arrested following his team’s embarrassing AFL Grand Final loss to the Richmond Tigers.
Michael Greene, 59, allegedly headbutted a female police officer at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Saturday as he was being escorted out for being too intoxicated.
Police are believed to have removed Greene from male bathrooms at about 5pm after complaints from other spectators.
Witness Annie, who asked her full name not be disclosed, said Greene senior was screaming at the top of his voice.
Police surround Michael Green outside the MCG on Saturday. They placed him next to a sign outlining the ‘conditions of entry’ which allegedly Greene breached with gusto
Michael Greene allegedly assaulted a female police officer at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Saturday as he was being escorted out for being too intoxicated
‘He was screaming that police are terrorists, that police were racist,’ she told Daily Mail Australia. ‘He was screaming out to everyone.’
‘I reckon at least eight officers had to barricade him from the crowd while they went through his bag. He was just so agitated.’
Annie said the clearly intoxicated Greene was held at bay for up to 15 minutes while police worked to get a van onto the concourse to evacuate him.
‘It took four police to actually get this guy into the back of the van. I had no idea it was Toby Greene’s dad and I just thought it was a completely drunk man … and I was thinking “what a waste of police resources for one person”,’ she said.
Police spent up to half-an-hour searching Greene’s possessions and instructed the irate boozer to keep his mouth shut, Annie said.
‘It was just so in your face. The police did an amazing job because I just feared this may turn ugly, especially with GWS losing, but they did contain the situation well,’ she said.
Daily Mail Australia can reveal police were perhaps wise to deal with the drunken Greene elder in greater numbers.
A search of his criminal history shows the troubled father has struggled to remain on the straight and has more than a dozen prior convictions.
Prior charges include assaults, stalking, thefts and multiple driving offences, including drink-driving and driving while disqualified.
He has also previously been convicted of resisting arrest in 2004 when he received a community based order and made to undertake a sex offenders program to deal with his stalking offences.
Previous court orders state he is suspected of suffering from schizophrenia and has fought drug addiction for years.
Greene and his 26-year-old son are understood to be estranged from each other and haven’t had a solid relationship in recent years.
Victoria Police confirmed a 59-year-old man was removed from the ground after he allegedly headbutted a female officer.
The father of Greater Western Sydney Giants star Toby Greene (pictured) was arrested after his son’s AFL Grand Final loss to the Richmond Tigers
He was charged with intentionally causing serious injury, assaulting and resisting police.
He appeared in court on Sunday dressed in a blue shirt over what appeared to be an orange footy jumper.
While in custody he needed Valium and suboxone, which is used to treat opioid addiction, Greene’s lawyer told the court.
Greene did not apply for bail and was remanded to appear at the Ringwood Magistrates’ Court next month.
Toby’s finals campaign was difficult at best prior to his dad’s arrest.
The half-forward’s 20-year-old cousin Finley took his own life in June, as the GWS star and his team worked toward qualifying for their first Grand Final appearance.
His mother, Kate Greene told 3AW how she had no choice but to break the news to her son over the phone.
‘I had to ring up Toby in Sydney and tell him what happened and he just drove straight to the airport in his shorts and thongs and jumped on the first plane to come home,’ she said.
Toby Greene’s younger cousin Finley, (pictured together as children) tragically took his own life earlier this year
Finley (pictured) was just 20 at the time of his death. Greene was going to dedicate the premiership to his late cousin if his team were able to topple the Tigers
‘Since that, we’re just picking up the pieces.’
Toby was going to dedicate the premiership to his late cousin if his team were able to topple the Tigers.
‘If he wins, he’ll be doing it for Finley,’ Ms Greene said.
‘There’s nothing that will ever make this any better, it’s the most tragic thing that can happen to a family, but it might give us a little bit of happiness for the day.’
Instead of her son, it was Ms Greene’s ex-husband who made headlines for his alleged performance at the MCG on Saturday.
Toby previously said his parents separated when he was five or six, but that both his parents tried their best to raise him.
‘I don’t think I had a difficult upbringing,’ he told The Herald Sun in 2017.
‘Mum and dad were pretty much the complete opposite. Mum was a really good mum. I went to a private school, got a scholarship to Wesley and that was lucky, and dad sort of had some troubles growing up.
‘He’s still a good dad, but he couldn’t control himself sometimes I guess.’
Mr Greene and his son are allegedly estranged and haven’t had a solid relationship in recent years
Toby acknowledged he and his dad had some difficult and sometimes terse interactions growing up – particularly when his father was intoxicated.
But he said his father’s heart was always in the right place.
‘He is one of the nicest guys you’d ever meet. If you ask all my mates, he always looked after us really well, he just let so much go. He’s really caring, really understanding, but he’s just put his body through too much,’ he said.
A spokeswoman for the GWS Giants refused to comment on the matter allegedly involving Toby’s father.
New legislation recently introduced by the Victorian government requires courts to hand out a minimum sentence of six months behind bars for anybody convicted of assaulting an emergency worker.
Greene was one of 43 people who were ejected from the Grand Final on Saturday.
Most of those people were removed for behaviour issues, while others smuggled alcohol and drugs into the event.
Flares were set off in the crowded Richmond precinct as thousands of fans celebrated the win
Police move in as flares are set off on Swan Street as Tigers fans celebrate their team’s victory in the 2019 AFL Grand Final
Other offences included ticketing violations and assaulting police officers.
Two men from Brookfield were also charged with assaulting police.
A 21-year-old allegedly bit an officer, who required treatment in hospital after the attack, while a 27-year-old was charged with hitting an officer on the back of the head.
A further six people were arrested during post match celebrations.
Toby Greene’s team lost by 89 points in the deciding match against the Richmond Tigers