Cenotaph vanadalised, man arrested

Defaced: The Port Macquarie war memorial was vandalised in the early hours of Thursday morning, March 30. Photo: supplied

Defaced: The Port Macquarie war memorial was vandalised in the early hours of Thursday morning, March 30. Photo: supplied

ONE month before Anzac Day commemorative services, the Port Macquarie war memorial cenotaph has been vandalised.

Police from the Mid North Coast local area command arrested a 48-year-old man during the early hours of Thursday, alleging he defaced the monument with chalk.

“At approximately 1.45am, security guards in the Port Macquarie CBD witnessed a man standing near the war monument,” Chief Inspector Mick Aldridge said.

Police allege the guard then saw the man draw a large swastika symbol and then write the words ‘god bless Satan’ and ‘hugs not drugs’ in chalk.

On the northern side, it’s alleged the man drew his own hands and wrote the words ‘love is rule’.

On the western side it is alleged he drew love hearts, and on the southern side wrote the word ‘peace’.

Security contacted police and they attended and arrested a 48-year-old man.

He was taken to the police station and charged with wilfully damage/deface a protected place.

He was bailed to appear in Port Macquarie local court on April 12.

Port Macquarie RSL Sub-branch president Greg Laird was shocked by the news.

“It’s very disappointing,” Mr Laird said. “It isn’t just us that it affects, as returned servicemen, it’s the whole community.

“There are a lot of people who stop to look and have their own little reflection, so to hear someone could (possibly) vandalise the cenotaph to this level is a first for our town and is very shocking.”

It gives a feeling of disappointment and disrespect. To hear someone could (possibly) vandalise the cenotaph to this level is a first for our town and is very shocking.

PMQ RSL Sub-branch president, Greg Laird