Police warn of gay chat sites after Surry Hills assault
Surry Hills Local Area Command is warning men who may be using online gay chat sites to use caution when meeting for the first time, following the assault and robbery of a 34-year-old man in Surry Hills on Monday.
The unnamed 34 year-old man from Wetherill Park arranged to meet with another man he’d hooked up with online at a hotel in Oxford Street. The two men met up at the hotel then adjourned to one of the hotel’s rooms.
Whilst in the hotel room, a third man is said to have entered the room via a balcony door and allegedly assaulted the 34-year-old.
The victim fled the room while the other two men were ransacking his property.
Police and emergency services were called to the scene and the victim was later admitted to St Vincent’s hospital where he was treated for a deep laceration to his scalp.
A crime scene was established and examined by forensic specialists. Police arrested a 29-year-old man a short time later at the hotel and searched his car and seized a number of items.
Surry Hills Crime Manager, Detective Inspector Craig Middleton, said people need to be vigilant when using social networking sites.
“It is dangerous to assume that on-line chat sites are a safe way to meet people for personal services.
“Anybody using these types of chat or meeting websites are to be extremely careful of criminals who prey on vulnerable victims.
“In this case the victim suffered a laceration to his scalp and it could have been a lot worse.
“When meeting people who you have only spoken to on the phone or over the internet, it is very important to meet them at a public spot or to take a friend along with you,” Middleton said.
The alleged assailant was taken to Surry Hills Police Station and charged with aggravated robbery with wounding. The man was refused bail and will reappear in Central Local Court on Thursday November 7 2013.