The AFL Player Spectator Current AFL Threat Level

Millionaires with a Year Ten Education

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Long March ... to Court

You can take a player out of the AFL, but you can't take the AFL out of the player. Revered former AFL star Michael Long, of the Bombers, will front the beak next month over an alleged bout of late-night bashing in a Darwin pub. The Aboriginal footballer has been held in high esteem by many Australians, but sadly, may yet prove that their faith was misplaced.

Both The Australian and The Age seem to be running the same basic copy (NB: Age cited here since it stays online longer.)

Long, 37, a former premiership player with AFL club Essendon, will deny allegations he assaulted David Henry in Darwin's St Mary's social club after the Northern Territory Football League (NTFL) grand final on March 25, his lawyer said.

Mr Henry has accused the Aboriginal sporting hero of striking him four times in the head during a late night altercation.

Long was later charged by police with assault.

Long's lawyer David De Silva told Darwin Magistrates Court on Tuesday that his client, who was interstate, intended to contest the charge.

Registrar Brenda McGarrity adjourned the assault matter until November 16. (The Age, 9/10/2006)

There's no doubt that Michael Long has done much to advance the interests of indigenous people in this country, especially indigenous footballers. But if the allegations are true, that's hardly an excuse. Hell, if Nelson Mandela beat someone up in a pub fight I'd be equally condemning. While his (non-football) service to the community might be a factor in any sentencing, let's hope it doesn't influence findings of guilt or otherwise.

We'll be following this story closely, along with the upcoming trials of current Magpies Brodie Holland and Alan Didak.

Citations: The Age, 9/10/2006

Word Count: 299

Labels: , , ,



    <    >
  • The "fight" with Long & Henry stems from a feud that has been going on for ages. Long was defending one of his family members because of Henry's abuse towards them. Long is yet to tell his side and I know who i'd pick. But because Long is an AFL star this gets front page up here. If it was any other person you wouldn't hear about it.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:23 pm, October 26, 2006  

  • <    >
  • sorry but i am from the tiwi islands and was at the scene of accident. henry DID NOT touch that woman, so long had no right to touch henry at the st mary's club, henry's wife had a fight with longs sister, not mr henry.
    kathy long is just lying to her family members and any way they settled it with the tiwi land council. so get the storie right befor you want to open your mouth.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:15 pm, April 18, 2007  

  • <    >
  • Anonymous comments to a hate-blog is hardly the gold standard of evidence.

    Here's how the ABC reported the result:

    Former AFL star and Aboriginal rights campaigner Michael Long has escaped a conviction today despite pleading guilty to an assault charge in the Darwin Magistrates Court.

    The court heard Long was at a party after May's Northern Territory Football League grand final when he saw the victim.

    Long was angry because he was told the man had attacked his sister in the past. He yelled at the man and punched him three times.

    Magistrate David Loadman agreed Long had acted as any "red-blooded Australian man" should to defend his sister and said he was entitled to leave the court with his head held high.

    "I hope today will raise the awareness of such violence against women," Long said outside the court.

    The 37-year-old was found guilty of assault and fined $40, but no conviction was recorded. (ABC, 12/12/2006)

    How bizarre. He pleaded guilty but was not convicted.

    It seems that NT law allows that untested allegations (via hearsay) of prior violence towards a third party is reasonable grounds for clobbering someone.

    Apparently, this defence may be restricted to male Australians.

    Somehow, the court holds that Long can leave with his head held high? And Long contends that this verdict advances the cause against violence?

    What a weird place. I guess the rest of Australia can chalk this up as one more thing to be ashamed about with the Northern Territory.

    No statehood for you until your legal system matures beyond the schoolyard!

    By Blogger Greg, at 3:13 pm, April 18, 2007  

Post a Comment    Comments: 

<< Home