1. A man has been charged over the death of Melbourne woman Courtney Herron.
A homeless man has been charged over the death of Courtney Herron, who was brutally murdered in a Melbourne park two days ago.
The man, 27, of no fixed address, was arrested on Sunday and charged overnight with one count of murder and will appear in Melbourne Magistrates Court on Monday, Victoria Police said in a statement.
The battered body of Ms Herron, 25, was found by dog walkers in Royal Park in the inner Melbourne suburb of Parkville on Saturday morning.
Police said she had suffered extreme violence.
“This was a particularly, particularly horrendous attack,” Homicide squad Detective Inspector Andrew Stamper said on Sunday.
He said there had been some attempt made to conceal the body.
Ms Herron had been couch surfing and sleeping rough for some time while struggling with drug and mental health issues.
Insp Stamper said she had been in sporadic contact with her family and there were “a lot of people out there who knew and loved Courtney”.
“When there’s a child that suffered drug use, mental health issues, family relationships can be fragmented,” he said.
“That doesn’t mean that families out there don’t love their children, and you know, our heart breaks for them.
“We are dealing with a heartbroken family again.”
Speaking to the media on Saturday, Assistant Commissioner Luke Cornelius said “Violence against women is absolutely about men’s behaviour, it’s not about women’s behaviour”.
“Every time I hear about a woman being attacked – for me as a man – it gives me some pause for reflection about what it is in our community that makes men think it’s OK to attack women, or take what they want from women,” he said, The Age reports.
“We need to reflect on our own behaviour, the behaviour of men known to us. We need to reflect on what we say to our sons, about whether they’re respecting their playmates in the playground, or respecting women in the early days when they’re looking to embark on relationships with women. We as a society need to take an opportunity to reflect on how men view women in our community.”
Ms Herron’s killing has sent shock waves among the wider Melbourne community with prominent and everyday Victorians outraged over the death of yet another young woman.
Impact for Women reports 24 women have been killed in Australia since the beginning of 2019, with the latest victim’s death marking the fourth killing of a lone woman in public in Melbourne in less than a year, The Age reports.
Over the weekend, friends of Ms Herron and others her laid floral tributes at the site where her body was found – just a short distance from Princes Park, where the body of aspiring comedian Eurydice Dixon was found on June 12 last year.
Ms Dixon, 22, was raped and murdered. Aiia Maasarwe, 21, also died after being attacked while walking home near La Trobe University on January 15.