More police at festival

Stephanie Canty, Mia Prestige and Zoe Purcell were amongst thousands of people who flocked to Lardner Park for this year’s Beyond the Valley music festival.

Stephanie Canty, Mia Prestige and Zoe Purcell were amongst thousands of people who flocked to Lardner Park for this year’s Beyond the Valley music festival.

Police searches, foot patrols and the dog squad were part of an increased police presence at Beyond the Valley music festival at Lardner Park over the new year’s period.

Baw Baw Highway Patrol also were active on local roads throughout the festival, conducting almost 1400 preliminary breath tests and 320 drug tests.

Baw Baw police services area Inspector Alison Crombie said despite the tragic death of one patron, overall the festival ran well this year.

“Dog squad and uniform members worked with venue security to ensure patron safety by tirelessly searching people and their vehicles for illicit drugs and contraband alcohol.

“We’ll never be able to single handedly stamp out illicit drug use – however it was obvious that the message of looking after your mates got through to most of the festival-goers,” she said.

A 20-year-old Mansfield was airlifted from Lardner Park in a critical condition on Saturday, December 29.  He died in Royal Melbourne Hospital on Tuesday morning.

The circumstances surrounding his death are still being investigated but police said it was not suspicious.

Police will prepare a report for the coroner.


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