News in Brief

November 29, 2020 at 1.40am Overdue traveller in extreme heat

An air and land search is currently underway in extreme heat for 37-year-old Yun-Seob Shin, who has been in Alice Springs for one month, and is possibly from Victoria.  He drives what is described as a White Nissan X-Trail, registration unknown.

Mr Shin failed to turn up for work yesterday morning, and had previously advised colleagues of his intention to go camping near Boggy Hole or Palm Valley on Thursday and Friday.

Mr Shin’s last confirmed location was Stuart Well Roadhouse on Thursday.

Senior Sergeant Shaun Furniss says in a media release: “The temperatures are extreme and the terrain is challenging out there.

“It is unknown what provisions or bush skills Mr Shin has, and police hold concerns for his welfare. We ask that if anyone has come across Mr Shin to please contact police urgently on 131 444.”

UPDATE 5pm: The man has been found during a helicopter search near Boggy Hole. “At this stage there are no suspicious circumstances,” says a police report.


November 27, 2020 at 11.22pm Government permits huge grog shops, sells out community 

Sir – It is very disappointing that the NT government has changed the law to allow liquor stores to be twice as big.

It looks like they are preparing to allow Dan Murphy, a subsidiary of Woolworths, to open huge grog shops in the NT.

We don’t need more and cheaper grog. Concerned groups have been struggling for many years to reduce the number of liquor outlets and cut down hours of trading in the NT.

The government itself is working at controlling the buying of alcohol with police or security guards outside liquor outlets. We are supposed to be working at closing the gap in indigenous and non-indigenous life expectancy.

Everyone knows the biggest cause of early death is alcohol, through illness, accidents, violence, or neglect.

I am no longer going to shop at Woolworths, even though the flight points are useful. I would like many people to boycott Woolworths to give them the message Dan Murphy super grog shops are not welcome here.

Wendy Baarda, Yuendumu


November 25, 2020 at 4pm Assault statistics provided by police rise sharply

There is only encouraging statistic in the Alice region crime figures compiled by the police for the year ending September 30, 2020: That’s a decrease of 25.62% in motor vehicle thefts over the year before when 406 cars were nicked.

This year it was 302.

But there were massive increases in assault (22.15%), domestic violence related assault (29.63%) and alcohol related assault (23.63%).

Adding together the three categories shows there were 2936 assaults in the year to 30/08/19 rising sharply to 3655 the year after.

Sexual assaults remained almost unchanged, with 62 and 64, respectively.

Property damage increased 9.42% from 1677 to 1835.

The Alice Springs urban centre includes the downtown and surrounding areas corresponding to the Alice Springs Local Government Area, and represents about 12% of the Northern Territory’s population.


November 18, 2020 at 12.10pm Regional SA revoked as a COVID hotspot

Regional South Australia has been revoked as a hot spot from midday today.

This means that people arriving in the Northern Territory from Regional South Australia will no longer have to undertake mandatory supervised quarantine. Anyone currently in mandatory quarantine from Regional South Australia will be able to exit.

Greater Adelaide remains as a declared hotspot for the purposes of travel to the Northern Territory.


November 17, 2020 at 8.25am CDU international student flight on track

Charles Darwin University (CDU) remains on track to be the first university in the country to pilot a program which will see its international students return to Australia, with the first flight almost set to arrive on November 30.

A statement from the university says “almost 90% of approximately 70 seats on the Singapore Airlines flight have been filled, with the remaining spots expected to be confirmed in the coming weeks”.

Students from five countries will travel to Singapore to be connected to the pilot fight which has “the full approval of the Northern Territory and Australian governments and will not be impacted by Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s announcement on Friday delaying the return of international students in other states.

“The CDU cohort will be the first group of international students to enter Australia since the introduction of hard border restrictions in March due to COVID-19.”

PHOTO supplied.


November 16, 2020 at 12.30 SA declared COVID hotspot

The NT Chief Health Officer has declared all of South Australia as a hotspot for the purposes of travel to the Northern Territory, effective immediately.

This follows on from an outbreak that has occurred in the northern suburbs of Adelaide and has grown overnight to include 17 positive COVID-19 cases, according to a media release.

Anyone travelling to the Northern Territory from South Australia will need to do undertake 14 days of mandatory, supervised quarantine.

Those people from South Australia arriving in the Northern Territory today will have the option of returning or entering mandatory quarantine in either Alice Springs or Howard Springs.

Due to the short notice, arrivals from South Australia today and tomorrow will not be required to pay the quarantine fee.

“If you travel to South Australia while it is a declared hotspot, you will be required to undertake 14 days mandatory quarantine on your return at a cost of $2,500 per person,” says the release.


November 3, 2020 at 12.45 Melbourne Cup Sweep draw

In the Yeperenye food court today, Zainab draws the numbers out of the barrel assisted by Rotary Club of Alice Springs members, Dominic Miller, Jenny Lillis (in the background) and Nick Tyllis.


October 24, 2020 at 7am Alice doctor chosen NT Young Achiever

Claire Chandler, 28 of Larapinta was last night chosen the NT Young Achiever of the Year.

Dr Chandler (pictured during the presentation via Zoom) has a passion for Indigenous health, say the award’s organisers.

She studied at the Territory’s own medical school.

“While others have left, Claire decided to stay in Alice Springs, pursue paediatric medicine, and find opportunities to encourage young doctors to become skilled,

“She works at Alice Springs Hospital, the sole doctor who resuscitates newborn babies and the only paediatric doctor on overnight.

“Claire conducts free swing dancing lessons and runs mock clinical exams for medical students. She completed her Doctor of Medicine degree from Flinders University NT Campus and has a paper published in the Medical Journal of Australia.”


October 23, 2020 at 1.45pm Indecent assaults, attempted bag snatch as 20 youths surround car.

Police say they wish to speak to a woman in regards to a series of incidents including stealing and assaults overnight.

An image taken from CCTV footage identifies a woman who was targeted by an unknown youth who attempted to snatch the woman’s handbag while she walked with a bike along Gap Road around 9.30pm.

The youth, along with a number of other unknown youths, were observed walking off from the attempted bag snatch and approaching two female tourists in a camper van parked in a car park along Gap Road and Stuart Terrace.

The group of up to 20 youths surround the vehicle before they allegedly indecently assaulted both women, aged 19 and 24-years-old and stole a bum bag.

CCTV operators alerted police to the incident and crews arrived on scene within minutes causing the group to scatter and the bum bag to be dropped nearby.

Detective Acting Senior Sergeant Carmen Butcher is urging anyone who was in the area at the time of these incidents to contact them.

UPDATE October 24, 2020: A girl aged 14 will be summonsed to appear in the Alice Springs Youth Justice Court in relation to the attempted bag snatch. During inquiries, detectives identified two boys, aged 14 and 15, in relation to the criminal damage of a vehicle in Stuart Tce overnight.

They will be dealt with under the Youth Justice Act 2005, police say.

“Investigations continue to identify those involved in a series of criminal offences including the indecent assault of the two tourists.”


October 18, 2020 at 10am LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Lower House seats stay at two

Sir – Labor has successfully secured democracy for the Northern Territory through its campaign to guarantee two Lower House MPs for the NT in the Federal Parliament.

We welcome the government’s agreement with the Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters (JSCEM) recommendation today that a guaranteed minimum of two lower house seats for the NT should be legislated.

We have fought hard on behalf of all Territorians since it first became clear the NT would lose an electorate under the formula the Australian Electoral Commission must use to determine the number of seats in each state and territory.

The government’s statement of support for the recommendation means Labor’s campaign will successfully prevent the NT from becoming one vast, under-represented electorate, served by a single lower house MP.

Labor has always been committed to ensuring all Territorians, including around 30 per cent of the population who are First Nations people, continue to have fair representation in our Federal Parliament.

Warren Snowdon MHR and Senator Malarndirri McCarthy


October 16, 2020 at 1pm Hit and run

A man suffered life threatening injuries in a hit and run in Alice Springs overnight.

Two youths aged 16 and 13 and a 19-year-old man were arrested following a foot chase and are currently assisting police with their inquiries. Two offenders remain outstanding.

Police responded to a two vehicle crash at the Larapinta traffic intersection just after 10pm.

Initial investigations indicate the vehicle, believed to be stolen, breached a red light and struck a motorcyclist travelling west towards Larapinta Drive.

The vehicle failed to stop at the scene of the crash and the 47-year-old man remains in a critical condition.

Traffic diversions were in place until earlier this morning to allow officers from the Major Crash Investigation Unit to process the crash scene.

Utilising Drone and CCTV capabilities, police were able to locate the offending vehicle and successfully deployed tyre deflation devices stopping the vehicle on Grevillia Drive where five offenders ran from the vehicle.


October 15, 2020 at 8am Seven youths apprehended for motor vehicle theft

Police have apprehended seven youths who attempted to flee a stolen motor vehicle they were travelling in.

The vehicle, a 2016 black Ford Everest and a wallet had been stolen in an unlawful entry of a home in East Side around 1am on Tuesday.

Just after 4:15am officers observed the vehicle travelling on Telegraph Terrace and initiated a pursuit, following it up until the Tom Brown round-about where a tyre deflation device was successfully deployed.

Two youths aged nine and 10-years-old were returned into the care of their responsible adult.

Four youths aged 13, 14, 16 and 16-years-old will be dealt with under the Youth Justice Act.

A 13-year-old girl has been summonsed to appear before court at a later date on one count each of Recklessly Endanger Life and Aggravated assault.

Meanwhile three people have been arrested and charged in relation to a number of property and motor vehicle offences in Alice Springs earlier this month.

It will be alleged a 19-year-old man and a 16-year-old boy unlawfully entered a home on East Side and stole two vehicles and the occupant’s wallet in the early hours of October 8.

The vehicles were observed driving recklessly in the Alice Springs CBD and it will be further alleged the youth used the victim’s credit card to make a number of unlawful transactions.

The pair were yesterday at a home in the Braitling area.


October 8, 2020 at 8am Darwin gets biggest October rain in 79 years

Darwin has had the highest daily October rainfall since 1941 – 97 years ago – with 113mm recorded at Darwin airport and 177mm at Marrara.

We’re off to a flying start to this wet season with 17 times more rain in Darwin than the average for this time of year (152.2mm compared to 8.8mm), says the Bureau of Metereology.

This is not monsoonal rain.

The rain this week in the Top End came from multiple lines of storms.

This increased rainfall is consistent with La Niňa conditions, which typically increase early wet season rains in northern Australia, bringing more moisture into the atmosphere and warming sea waters around the western Top End. In the tropics we often see heavy rainfall in some areas, while others might miss out or get far less. This is because the hot conditions cause isolated clouds to rise rapidly, creating towers of clouds that then develop into showers or thunderstorms.

These are known as convective clouds. Outside of the tropics stratiform (layer) clouds are more common, which lead to uniform and widespread rain.


LETTER October 8, 2020 at 8am Car thefts rampant. Guess when!

Sir – In light of constant reports of persistent vehicle thefts in Alice Springs, here’s a quote that might interest you: “(Magistrate) Mr Murphy said earlier in dealing with a car stealing case that people in Alice Springs were up in arms over the high rate of car theft.

” ‘There are 70 cars missing in this town today,’ Mr Murphy said on Monday.”

This was reported in a front page story “Magistrates are concerned over high crime rate” which accompanied a headline story “Law breaking is at ‘incredible’ level”.

When was this published, one may ask?

On August 25, 1982 – just shy of four decades ago.

The Alice had a population below 20,000 at the time.

So much for those who often claim that crime in Alice Springs now is the worst it’s ever been – no, it’s been like this for decades, it never really changes.

To add a little more perspective, consider that at the time of these reports:

Paul Everingham was still the first Chief Minister of the Northern Territory.

Malcolm Fraser was Prime Minister of Australia.

The current Chief Minister, Michael Gunner, was six years old.

Several members of the NT Legislative Assembly today, including ministers of the government, were still years away from being twinkles in the eyes of their parents.

Today’s politicians fling accusations and insults at each other blaming recent preceding governments of either major party for the woeful crime rates that drive so many people to distraction and despair.

The fact is, however, these problems were deeply entrenched long before many of them came to the Territory or were born here; and on current form there is no prospect of these problems being properly addressed anytime soon in future.

Alex Nelson, Alice Springs


October 8, 2020 at 8am Lonely Planet names Uluru among top three best places in the world

Lonely Planet has ranked “Australia’s spiritual heartland,” the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, in the top three locations to see in the world in 2020, according to an NT Government media release.

The full list will be published in the Lonely Planet’s Ultimate Travel List, alongside eight other Australian experiences.

The coffee table book features 500 experiences from across the world, with Uluru climbing the rankings from 33 in 2019, to three in 2020, making it the best-performing Australian “must see”.

The park is being acknowledged for the destination’s sustainable practices and ability to connect travellers with Aboriginal culture.

It came in behind Petra, Jordan and the Galapagos Islands.


October 7, 2020 at 5pm Puddles in the Todd

More than 100mm of rain has fallen in the upper Adelaide River overnight while southern regions have recorded more than 60mms north east of Alice Springs but only between 10 and 20mm around the town of Alice Springs since Monday.  

There was only enough rain to leave puddles in the Todd River, which last flowed in February.

No further rainfall is expected as the major cloud band that covered central Australia has moved east, says the Bureau of Metereology.  

There has been some flooding on the Sandover Highway north of Alice Springs between the Plenty Highway intersection and Ammaroo Elkedra, currently closed.

Three-day rainfalls across the south included: 73mm at Arltunga; 71mm at The Garden; 69mm at Gemtree Park (all north east of Alice Springs) and just 20mm at Alice Springs Airport.

In Alice Springs there will be mild conditions from tomorrow.  


September 24, 2020 at 4.20pm Indecent assault

A 30-year-old man who indecently assaulted a woman in a car park in Alice Springs yesterday has been arrested and charged, according to police.

Just after 11:30am a woman was walking in the Gregory Terrace car park when she was approached by a man who is alleged to have indecently assaulted her. The woman punched the man twice to the face, causing him to run from the scene.

Provided with an excellent description of the man, police were able to utilise CCTV systems to follow the offender who then got into a taxi and left the area.

The man was located and arrested at a Sadadeen address and taken to the Alice Springs Watch House where he was charged with one count of Commit an Act of Gross Indecency. He was remanded in custody and is scheduled to appear before the Alice Springs Local Court today.


September 21, 2020 at 3pm Indecent behaviour

A woman was confronted by a man in Sturt Terrace, Eastside, at about 4.45pm who, after a short conversation, began to masturbate.

She told him to leave and he was last seen walking towards the Todd River.

No one was injured during this incident, police say.

They describe the man as being of Aboriginal in appearance, 176cm tall, with a bald head, solid build and missing a front tooth.

At the time of the incident the man was wearing running shoes, brown cargo knee length shorts with a grey shirt. Image from the police of a man they wish to speak to.


September 21, 2020 at 3pm Unlawful entry and assault

At about 1:30am a resident in Hawkins Court woke up to discover three unknown offenders in the lounge room on his home. It is alleged one of the offenders ran at the victim and struck him to the head with a glass bottle before the trio fled the scene.

The victim, a 20-year-old man, suffered a laceration and bruising to the head and went to the hospital for treatment.


September 19, 2020 at 10.35am Police officers charged with drug offences

Two police officers from Darwin Command have been charged with drug offences.

A 43-year-old man was charged with offences including supplying a Schedule 1 dangerous drug less than commercial quantity; possessing a Schedule 1 dangerous drug traffickable quantity and possessing a firearm whilst unlicensed. He has been remanded in custody and will appear in court on September 21.

A 28-year-old woman has been charged with possessing Schedule 1 and 2 drug less than traffickable quantity. She has been granted bail and will appear in court on October 13.

The two officers have been suspended without pay.


September 16, 2020 at 12.10pm Letter to the Editor

Sir – As a former Alice Springs resident of 17 years [and former sports writer for the Alice Springs News] my love of writing has never dwindled.

With the inspiration of my lady, Denise, whom I married three years after my first wife, Jenny, died, I began rewriting a science fiction novel I started in 2002.

Living in a remote area of the United States of America, Denise observed I needed to do something with my spare time.  Hemmed in by ice and snow, she suggested I complete the novel I told her about previously.  De was working as a Registered Nurse, so her time was fully occupied.

My first novel of The Javelin Trilogy was recently released by New York City publishing company, Page Publishing.  

Writing under the nom de plume, Cutcliffe King, it is a mixture of history, mystery and science fiction. Books two and three will follow.

Book one, The Recruitment, is set mainly in the south western former whaling town of Albany, in Western Australia.

Now the big question is: “Will I make my fortune as a novelist?”

To be quite honest, the publishing companies and the distributors – Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Google, Apple – are the big winners.  Fortunately for me, I bought 100+ books that I have signed and sold in various towns!  This has provided some comfort, knowing my work is being read.  

Terry Lewis aka Cutcliffe King


September 15, 2020 at 5.40pm Crossed into NT on foot but got caught

A 23-year-old New South Wales man entered the NT on foot after being told by police at the Kulgera crossing he would need to undergo two weeks’ quarantine, and after driving back into SA and abandoning his vehicle about two kilometres to the south.

Late yesterday the man was located and arrested in Yulara to where police suspect he had been hitchhiking.

The man was issued a notice to appear in court for contravention of an emergency declaration.

Police say 32,391 compliance checks have now been completed and 150 fines issued.


September 15, 2020, 3.57pm Public Library soon to welcome all-comers

The current two-hour closure of the library from 1-3pm each day, ostensibly for “Spring cleaning”, is expected to end with the start of the school holiday program, at the end of this month.

At the same time the library is expected to again welcome all-comers. This follows months of a ban on unaccompanied youth 15 years and under, which has been the subject of debate in the community.


September 14, 2020 4.15pm Arrest for intending to cause serious harm

Two men will appear before the Alice Springs Local Court charged in relation to the serious assault of a man in Alice Springs earlier this month.

On September 4 the men, aged 29 and 34 are alleged to have seriously assaulted a 43-year-old man.

He was found in the driveway of an East Side and taken to the hospital where he received treatment for life threatening injuries.

Meanwhile four people who drove around the Alice Springs CBD in a reckless manner in a stolen motor vehicle at the weekend have been arrested.

Multiple people fled the stolen vehicle when stopped on Undoolya Road following the successfully deployment of Tyre Deflation Device by front line officers.

One of the offenders who attempted to flee was tasered after he allegedly ran at an officer armed with an edged weapon. He was arrested and later taken to the hospital for treatment.

Another alleged offender who struck an officer in the face, was arrested at the scene and two others following a foot chase by police.

A 19-year-old man will appear before the Alice Springs Local Court today charged with unlawful use of a motor vehicle and stealing.

A 16-year-old male has been charged with one count each of unlawful use of a motor vehicle and being armed with an offensive weapon and will be dealt with under the Youth Justice Act.

A 17-year-old male has been charged with unlawful use of a motor vehicle and assaulting police and will be dealt with under the Youth Justice Act.

A 16-year-old male has been charged with one count of unlawful use of a motor vehicle and will be dealt with under the Youth Justice Act.


September 11, 2020 12.15pm Indecent assault

Around 10:20pm yesterday two women were walking in the area of Ross Park Oval when they were approached by a male. He allegedly assaulted one of the women before leaving the scene.

He is described as a light-skinned Caucasian in his thirties, about 179 centimetres tall, solid build, with brown hair. He was wearing dark shorts, possibly denim, a dark t-shirt and thongs. Police report.