News State Victoria More than $850,000 raised for victims of Bourke St tragedy

More than $850,000 raised for victims of Bourke St tragedy

Thalia Hakin Bourke St
A photo of Thalia Hakin was among tributes in the mall. Photo: ABC
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More than $850,000 has been donated to help the victims of last week’s Bourke Street tragedy in Melbourne.

The figure, as of Tuesday evening, included pledges of $100,000 each from the Victorian and federal governments to the Bourke Street Fund.

Five people died and about 30 were injured when a car drove onto the footpath and ploughed into pedestrians in the CBD on Friday.

The Victorian government set up a fund to aid the victims and families affected by the tragedy, inviting donations via the Victorian government’s website, or by calling 1800 226 226.

The fund’s website says money raised will be used to “provide financial support to the immediate families” of those affected by the incident.

“This might mean providing funding for people’s immediate and longer term care and support needs, and could include funeral costs, psychological support and care needs depending on the family,” it said.

An independent panel will guide decisions about the spending and allocation of the fund.

Scam warning

One listener to Melbourne radio station 3AW called in to say she was almost scammed by a man claiming to be collecting money for the Bourke Street Fund.

A woman, who identified herself only as Mel, told the 3AW Drive show she received a call from a person claiming to be from the Melbourne City Council requesting her bank and credit card details.

Mel said when she questioned the man he hung up.

Youngest victim laid to rest

The tragedy’s youngest victim, three-month-old Zachary Bryant, was laid to rest in a private service on Tuesday.

The baby boy was thrown from his pram when the car drove through the busy pedestrian street.

Bourke st victims
Zara Bryant (L) was injured in the incident while Zachary (R) was killed Photo: ABC

Zachary’s two-year-old sister Zara was also injured in the rampage and is in a stable condition in hospital.

Thalia Hakin, will also be remembered with a private funeral.

The other victims were 22-year-old Jess Mudie, 33-year-old Matthew Si, and a 25-year-old Japanese man.

In a statement, Zachary’s parents thanked those who have helped, comforted and grieved with them.

“Your kind words really mean the world to us,” they said.

“We ask you to keep us and Zara in your prayers.”

After a public vigil was held in Federation Square on Monday night, a condolence book is available for members of the community to sign at Town Hall.

Japanese PM’s personal request

Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe personally asked Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull to look after the family of the Japanese national who was killed in the rampage.

The request came during a call Mr Turnbull made to Mr Abe on Monday night to discuss the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement.

Bourke st victims
Matthew Si, 33, and Jess Mudie, 22, were also killed during the incident. Photo: Victoria Police

Mr Turnbull conveyed his sympathies to Mr Abe and the man’s family.

The Japanese victim’s parents have not released any details about their son.

The man accused of driving car in the rampage, 26-year-old Dimitrious “Jimmy” Gargasoulas, has been charged with five counts of murder.

He has been remanded in custody and ordered to face court via video link in August.

Gargasoulas, who was on bail at the time of the attack, was arrested by police after the tragedy and has been in hospital with a gunshot wound.

The Victorian government on Monday announced a wide-ranging review of the bail system, and the establishment of a night court so magistrates can preside over bail hearings.

-with ABC

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