The father of a 26-year-old man stabbed to death near Seaford train station in Melbourne’s south-east says his son was a “go-getter” with a “heart of gold”, who was defending his girlfriend when he was fatally wounded with a bottle.
A 17-year-old boy from Frankston has been arrested.
Mike Smith, 57, said his son Cameron had been out with his girlfriend on Wednesday night when they were approached by a group of people who verbally abused Cameron’s girlfriend.
“He went to defend her,” Mr Smith told radio station 3AW.
“And a bottle was broken and in that fight he was stabbed in the heart and died fairly quickly.”
A number of floral tributes have been laid near the scene of the attack for Cameron, who his father described as a “great young man” with his future ahead of him as a carpenter.
“He was a go-getter, hard worker, he had a heart of gold, he’d help anyone, anytime,” he said.
“He was a fantastic kid.”
Mr Smith said his son was also a gifted runner who had competed in competitive cross-country running in his teenage years.
Through tears, he said his son’s dreams of one day starting a family and becoming a registered builder had been “snuffed out in a matter of minutes”.
“You hear stories … of people losing loved ones to crimes and lives taken and you feel sorry for them and heartfelt for them, and your life goes on and you don’t really know what they’re feeling and going through,” he said.
“And now I do.”
‘No doubt’ offenders will be caught, police say
Victoria Police Chief Commissioner Shane Patton said the stabbing occurred around Station Street in Seaford shortly after 6:30pm on Wednesday, and there were a number of witnesses being followed up by homicide detectives.
“We will identify these offenders, there’s no doubt about that,” he told 3AW.
“They’d be better off coming forward and handing themselves in because it won’t take us long to scoop them up I don’t think.”
Homicide detectives have arrested a 17-year-old boy from Frankston, who is in custody.
They are working to identify two other males and a female they believe can assist with the investigation.
Commissioner Patton said he was “terribly concerned” about stabbings and knife attacks in the community, which had been on the rise.
“The prevalence and the use of knives that we’re seeing nowadays is very, very concerning for me,” he said.
“Often you hear the excuse when they are apprehended with them [knives], ‘I’ve got it for self-defence.’ But we know that having that perceived belief in self-defence, suddenly it becomes used in a moment of anger and they’ve killed someone.”
Anyone who witnessed the incident or has information is urged to contact Crime Stoppers.