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St Kilda police brawl: Young mum, boyfriend, brother accused of bashing a cop

Brawl accused: Kayla Potts with her boyfriend Jack Houldcroft

A young mother is one of a group of friends accused of punching a policeman from behind in a sickening attack that was caught on video. 

Kayla Potts, 25, and her fiance Jack Houldcroft, both from Melbourne’s south, were charged over the horrific attack on two officers in St Kilda on Sunday morning. 

Footage allegedly showing Senior Constable Darren Shepherd’s head being pounded into the pavement by the couple’s friend, Phillip O’Donnell, sparked outrage on Monday morning. 

The Melbourne Magistrates Court heard Potts, Houldcroft, her brother Trent Potts and O’Donnell had been attending a 30th birthday party in St Kilda when they got into an argument upon leaving the venue. 

A young transgender person intervened in the dispute and Trent Potts allegedly booted the Good Samaritan in the testicles. Police were called and arrived just as the group were about to board a taxi.

Kayla Potts, a mother of a three-year-old, was granted bail

Her partner Jack Houldcroft did not apply for bail

Potts (left), accused of striking a police officer from behind, was granted bail. But her boyfriend Houldcroft (right) did not apply to be released from custody

Police allege Houldcroft punched and kicked one police officer as he lay on the ground and 'spear tackled' another cop after he clambered to his feet

Police allege Houldcroft punched and kicked one police officer as he lay on the ground and ‘spear tackled’ another cop after he clambered to his feet

Trent Potts, who was allegedly wearing a pink shirt, was identified and questioned by Senior Constable Adam McKenzie.

Detective Senior Constable Jacob Laidlaw told the court Potts broke free and made a run for it.

Senior Constable Darren Shepherd took chase but tripped on the gutter, he said.

The court heard Trent Potts then allegedly shaped up to Mr McKenzie before striking him.

The experienced officer took him down as his partner ran to help.

It was then that police allege Kayla Potts struck Mr McKenzie from behind. 

He retaliated with a Mag light torch to the side of her head.

The mother of a three-year-old child appeared in court sporting a bandage on her head from the blow.

It was then that police claim O’Donnell attacked Mr Shepherd from behind, slamming his head repeatedly into the footpath.

They further allege Houldcroft punched and kicked Mr McKenzie as he lay on the ground.

He then allegedly ‘spear tackled’ Mr Shepherd after he got to his feet.

Sickening footage showed a man repeatedly slamming a police officer's head into the ground

Sickening footage showed a man repeatedly slamming a police officer’s head into the ground

Police continue to search for several other people they believe participated in the brawl 

Police continue to search for several other people they believe participated in the brawl 

He was hit with pepper spray, but the men fled, leaving Kayla Potts injured on the ground.

She took herself to hospital and was arrested later that day.

Her brother was caught that night, with footage found on his phone allegedly identifying his co-offenders.

Police continue to search for several other people they believe participated in the brawl.

Senior Constable Laidlow told the court the officer sustained horrific injuries, including a ruptured bicep and suspected fractured cheekbone.

‘It’s quite a strong case and it’s only going to get stronger,’ he said.

Kayla Potts was granted bail by magistrate Donna Bakos despite arguments by police she was at risk of committing further offences.

She had admitted to punching the officer, the court heard.

Her partner made no application for bail.

Trent Potts and O’Donnell are expected to apply for bail this evening. 

All four were charged with two counts of assault police, affray, violent disorder, intentionally cause injury and other assault related offences.   

Senior police described the brawl footage as ‘animalistic’ and the state premier said the incident was ‘disgusting’. 

Victoria Police Superintendent Tony Silva this morning described the alleged attack as one of the worst he’s seen. 

‘I would describe it as rag dolling him, smashing his head into the concrete roadway,’ Mr Silva said. 

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