200 PARTY ANIMALS
By ED SOUTHORN
THIS might be the Tweed's worst party house.
After five "out-of-control" parties in the past two months at the Dulguigan Road, North Tumbulgum, decrepit green weatherboard cottage, neighbours are living in fear for their physical safety and for their property.
Tweed/Byron Local Area Command police, struggling with limited resources to control increasingly frequent wild teen parties in the Tweed and Byron shires, have now made the old riverfront house the target of an investigation, aiming to crack down on violent weekend parties.
On Saturday night more than 200 youths, some as young as 13 or 14, converged on the share house, rented by older teenagers next to the Seventh Day Adventist Church.
A DJ at the party pumped out extremely loud music until about 2.30am, with revellers continuing to party afterwards.
Tweed Heads police received up to 30 phone complaints from neighbours and from Tumbulgum residents across the river.
Youths were fighting and urinating in neighbours' gardens, and swearing and staggering drunk and on drugs outside the house and on the river bank.
A neighbour found youths from the party passed out in his yard.
Cars believed to be from the party raced along Riverside Drive in Tumbulgum.
One Tumbulgum resident from across the river called police after she was approached by youths looking for help for young teen girls who had passed out on drugs.
"There were no adults, no supervision, it was totally out of control," the resident said.
"The noise was incredible, you could hear it from miles away."
The Daily News yesterday spoke to three Tumbulgum residents about the party, but no-one would be identified because they fear reprisals from the youths.
The house was deserted yesterday and debris from the party had been partly cleaned up.
"A couple of police went over there but there wasn't much they could do," one resident said. "What are parents doing about this?
"They need to help stamp it out, know where their kids are, but too many parents just don't want to know about it."
Inspector Jim Kane said police were called to investigate noise complaints at the house and there had been problems identifying particular persons.
"We can confirm these premises are the subject of an ongoing investigation," Insp Kane said.
"It's a difficult situation to address if you don't have advance notice and just turn up in the middle of it all.
"But we are gathering information.
"These parties are a problem along the coast, where you have numbers of teenagers taking over the streets."
Insp Kane stressed police were working hard to stamp out the wild party craze.