Child 'thrown' from West Gate Bridge Child 'thrown' from West Gate Bridge


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Child 'thrown' from West Gate Bridge



29/01/2009 11:31:00 AM

A 36-year-old man has been arrested after a young girl was thrown from a 58-metre high section of the West Gate Bridge into the Yarra River.

Police are questioning the man, reportedly from Hawthorn, who was arrested in the Melbourne CBD.

The man, believed to be the father of the girl, was arrested outside the Commonwealth Law Courts building at the corner of La Trobe and William streets.

The Age believes he had gone with his two other children to the building.

A witness at the court told The Age that the man and his two children were in a "distressed state''.

The Age believes the family was part of a family law dispute in the Federal Magistrates Court earlier this week, and the man returned to the court unexpectedly this morning.

A caller to radio 3AW said he saw four or five police, including one with his gun drawn, surround a man on the ground outside the court building.

Paramedics this morning spent 45 minutes working to resuscitate the girl, aged about 5, who police believe was hurled from the bridge about 9am.

Witnesses have told police a man driving in the inbound lane of the Westgate Freeway pulled up near the top of the bridge and threw the child into the water below.

The girl was pulled from the water close to the western bank of the river on the northern side of the bridge about 9.15am.

Water police and air ambulance units were involved in her rescue.

Homicide squad detectives are travelling to the bridge to take over the investigation.

The inbound left-hand lane of the freeway has been closed for about 500m on the approach to the top of the bridge.