‘Having their nipples pinched’: harrowing accounts of school bullying

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Every child in NSW has a legal right to access and participate in education, regardless of disability or special needs.
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But Carly Landa said there were “definitely negative consequences” to sending her son to school.

Louie, now 11, went to school for three years before his parents decided to home-school him.

“For Louie, it just didn’t work,” she said of her son, who is on the autism spectrum. “The ideal is every student’s needs are met and that every student is supported as a learner.

“But the reality just doesn’t actually translate. The numbers in the classroom, the lack of support.”

However, the decision to home educate children with disabilities or special needs means they do not receive the support provided to other students – a situation parents want the NSW government to address by funding services. Schools unable to meet children’s needs

A NSW parliamentary inquiry into students with a disability or special needs has been told many parents choose home education because schools do not adequately cater to their children’s needs.

“Students with a disability are commonly home educated because parents believe that schools will be unable to meet their needs … or to protect them from harm,” according to the Home Education Association’s submission to the inquiry.

One parent gave the inquiry a harrowing account of the bullying experienced by her 11-year-old daughter, who has a moderate intellectual disability and autism.

“She was bitten with blood drawn, hair ripped out of her head, arms twisted and bruises every day of the week,” the parent, whose name was suppressed, said.

Complaints to the school were given short shrift, the parent said. “Their response was that her being hit was good opportunity to teach the hitter that they shouldn’t hit.”

The parent said the situation was even worse at another school, where the girl and other girls in her class were indecently assaulted by the boys.

“They were also assaulted by having their nipples pinched until they cried, had their skirts lifted and indecently touched under their pants, punched, kicked, pinched and pushed.”

The inquiry, which will conduct its next hearing in Shellharbour on Friday, was told boys in the class would “regularly masturbate” in the classroom, with teachers refusing to take action to stop the behaviour.

“The principal said she could do nothing about the goings-on in the class,” the parent said.

The parent said she turned to home education after the Department of Education refused her application for distance education: “I have to rely on a carer payment from Centerlink (sic). My ability to earn an income and provide for my daughter has been devastated.”

The HEA’s submission included the experience of a parent resorting to home education after her son, who had learning disabilities, suffered escalating violence and bullying at school.

“Things got so bad that he began to self-harm, smashing his head against walls because he felt so completely distressed,” the parent said. “It was in desperation that I decided to try home education.”

Nicole Rogerson, the chief executive of Autism Awareness , said successive state governments had paid “lip service” to inclusion.

“Teachers are untrained and hideously under-resourced,” she said. “The Education Department makes big claims as to how children with disability have a home in their local schools but rarely does it play out in practice.

“Schools are routinely discouraging parents from enrolling their children and suggesting they would be better off in a school which can cater better to that child.”

Ms Rogerson said: “Other schools merely suspend children with challenging behaviour, which means the child who finds school difficult gets rewarded by not coming to school with a suspension.” ‘These students appear not to count’

Karleen Gribble, the disability spokeswoman for the HEA, said a “high proportion” of home-educated children have a disability or special needs, ranging from autism or anxiety to hearing and visual impairment.

Ms Gribble said children may be traumatised by negative experiences with schooling.

In contrast, the HEA’s submission said children’s medical conditions often improve after home education is started: “It is extremely common for children who had been prescribed medications for psychological or behavioural issues to be able to eliminate or reduce their medication.”

She said exact numbers were not known because data is not collected: “Since they are not counted, these students appear not to count to government or education authorities.”

A federal parliamentary inquiry recommended in 2016 the collection of data about home-schooled students with a disability as well as measures to improve educational outcomes and address bullying.

There has been a “steady increase” in the number of home-schooled children in NSW over the past 10 years, with more than 4000 students registered at the end of 2016, according to the NSW Education Standards Authority.

Of the 80 per cent of parents who provided a reason for choosing to home educate, around one in five nominated special learning needs, compared to 10 per cent in 2012, a NESA spokesman said.

Ms Landa said her son’s needs were complex. Louie has been tested as gifted, but is on the autism spectrum and has anxiety. He also has dysgraphia, a learning disability that affects his ability to write.

Ms Landa said Louie’s abilities in areas such as mathematics and history is at a high school level.

“Home education allows us to go beyond what they teach in school and focus on what he’s interested in,” she said. A lack of support

Yet removal from the school system in NSW means that children with disabilities or special needs do not receive the support services provided to other students.

Apart from a carer allowance of around $55 a week, Ms Landa said she did not receive any funding or support for Louie’s educational needs.

In contrast, other states like Western provide support for home educated children.

“Families who have a child with a disability are those who often struggle the hardest to gain access to resources that their child needs because such resources can be very expensive,” the HEA’s submission said. “This is compounded by the fact that families are often foregoing an income in order to home educate.”

The HEA is pressing for data to be collected on home educated students with disabilities and special needs as well as access to the same resources provided to other students and the option of attending school part-time.

Ms Gribble said the National Disability Insurance Scheme was a “potential” source of support but it was complicated: “For children in institutional schooling, NDIS does not provide for support for anything that it is considered the school should be providing.”

A NSW Department of Education spokesman said the state government spent more than $1 billion to support 100,000 students with disability in the state’s public schools.

“Students with disability are educated either in a regular or specialist support class, depending on their assessed needs and preferences of their parents, with specialist support classes planned and established annually to meet local student need,” he said.

“The department also provides a wide range of professional learning and support for teachers to extend their knowledge and skills in teaching students with disability.”

Tim Mulroy, the vice-president of the NSW Teachers Federation, said schools had been left without adequate resources to meet the needs of all students.

“Students with high functioning autism are now provided with a much more limited funding arrangement which needs to be addressed,” he said.

Mr Mulroy said distance education centres could be utilised by students schooled at home.

“The federation’s view on home schooling is that an inclusive public school setting in which a student can develop not only their academic needs but also their social competence is preferred to a situation in which the student is learning in isolation from their peers,” he said.

NPL: Broadmeadow coach Ruben Zadkovich frustrated by change to injury waiver rule

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BLOW: Magic midfielder Alex Kantarovski will miss the rest of the season after again rupturing his anterior cruciate ligament. Picture: Jonathan CarrollAnother season-ending knee operation to Alex Kantarovski, a host of other injurylossesand a rule change have left Broadmeadow coach Ruben Zadkovich in a bittersweet situation.
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Kantarovski, who ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament early in 2015, hurt the same knee in training before the 7-0 loss to Maitland on May 7. Not believing it was serious, the holding midfielder planned to play against Maitland butpulled out in the warm-up.

Scans later revealed a rupture to the repaired ACL in what Zadkovich said was a “big blow” to his side.

Magic are also without defenders Jon Griffiths (shoulder), Scott Robertson (ankle) and Lawrence Foteff (hip) for the immediate future, whilethe versatileJayden Barber (knee) has withdrawn.

Before this year, Zadkovich would have been able to sign a player from a rival club on an injury waiver for Kantarovski outside the windows for player points system (PPS)roster changes.

However, that concession was removed before this season after being seen as a loophole allowing clubs to poach players. Clubsare still able to recruit players on injury waivers from outside the NNSW NPL before June 30.Zadkovich believes the change encourages clubs to look past local talent.

“By putting the rule in, all the association has done is made it very difficult to replace someone with quality,” Zadkovich said. “We’ve lost Alex Kantarovski, one of our best midfielders, but we can’t sign anyone else from this league.

“We’ve got to go outside this league and you think that means going to Sydney or further. Then you’ve got to get them to come here and we’re not one of the big-money clubs. Broadmeadow has never been that type of club that’s going to lure big-name players and throw money at them.

“I don’t understand the rule because there are probably guys that are decent footballers in this league who are not getting the game time they’d like and potentially could come and play. That is promoting footballers and giving them an opportunity in this league.But we can’t do it and I find it very frustrating.”

The first-year coach said Magic were without four starting players and he would again turn to youngsterslikeJeremy Wilson, Charlie Cox andJacobDowse for the FFA Cup game against New Lambton at Alder Park on Wednesday night and against Hamilton on Sunday.

“The situation forces me to do something I like doing anyway, that’s putting my faith into the young kids at my club,” he said.

“They will get that opportunity tomorrow night and again on Sunday, and they will be well equipped to give it a crack.If they fall short, we certainly won’t be hanging them out todry.

“They good footballers and the future of the club, but are they ready to tackle Olympic in a derby? We’re about to find out.”

ReviewTwo to Tango

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Theatre ReviewTwo to TangoDAPA, at DAPA Theatre, HamiltonEnds May 27THE two plays on this double bill, Haiku and Last Tango in Little Grimley, each run for about 35 minutes, and they show just how engaging and universally entertaining short plays that are well written and staged can be.
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Haiku, by American playwright Kate Snodgrass, is the moving story of an ageing mother’s efforts to get her married daughter to help care for the live-at-home sister who has suffered from autism since childhood. The autistic girl wears a helmet to prevent her damaging her brain when she frustratedly beats her head.

Director Philip McGrath and the actors – Karen Lantry as the mother, Nell; Alison Cox as the autistic daughter, Louise; and Leanne Guihot as the demanding sister, Billie – affectingly bring out the relationships, with Billie shown in childhood flashbacks bullying Louise, and not believing her mother’s assertion that beautifully expressed Japanese haiku-style poetry that was published under her name was actually voiced by Louise.

Lantry’s Nell shows the warmth the mother has for both of her daughters, trying to make Louise feel comfortable in dark moments she experiences before Billie’s arrival, and giving understanding responses to Billie’s sharply expressed scepticism about Louise’s capabilities. Cox’s voice and expressions change swiftly and movingly as she responds to the words and movements of her mother and sister. And Guihot’s Billie, unsurprisingly, repeatedly makes clear her belief that she suffered in her upbringing because of the attention her mother gave to Louise.

McGrath takes to the stage in British writer David Tristram’s Last Tango in Little Grimley as the chairman of an amateur theatre company with just four members that is facing closure because of declining audiences. Much to the concern of the other members – played by Karen Lantry, David Yarrow and Allison Van Gaal – he writes a sex comedy aimed at selling tickets. Director Isobel Denholm and the players amusingly take the story through rehearsals and a post-opening night meeting. It’s easy to see real people in these actors, each of whom see themselves as having the right idea for saving the company.

McGrath’s Gordon ignores the often sensible suggestions made by the other company members, and his behaviour as director during the play’s rehearsals, while it has the audience laughing, will be familiar to many people who have been involved in theatre. Lantry’s Joyce sees herself as the company’s star, but her performance in rehearsals amusingly contradicts that. Nonetheless, there is often sense in her suggestions. Yarrow’s Bernard, a set builder who is cast in the play to make up the numbers, is certainly aware of the limits of his abilities. And Van Gaal’s Margaret, while the most sensible participant and a peacemaker, is a follower, not a leader, and invariably finds her suggestions ignored.

Sydney man charged with murdering his mother at Sylvania appears in court

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A man who allegedly murdered his mother in a south Sydney townhouse has asked the court for a mental health assessment.
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Nathan Connors, 28, appeared in Newtown Local Court on Tuesday after he was charged following his arrest at St Peters, in the inner west, on Monday.

His 55-year-old mother Lynda Connors’ bloodied body was found sprawled in bed inside the Sylvania townhouse she shared with her two children earlier on Monday.

Mr Connors’ older brother, Simon, 31, discovered their mother’s body at 7am and called emergency services.

In court, Mr Connors’ Legal Aid lawyer Deone Provera flagged with the court concerns for his client’s welfare.

“I am asking for a mental health assessment,” he told the court.

Magistrate Margaret Quinn noted Mr Provera’s concerns and adjourned the matter to Sydney’s Central Local Court on July 11.

Bail was not applied for and was formally refused. Connors will appear by audiovisual link at his next court appearance.

Mr Connors was stopped by police in his mother’s car at St Peters on Monday morning.

Also in the car was a crossbow, a pitchfork wrapped in a towel and the family dog.

Police said the car’s number plate was automatically detected by a passing police car, with an alert advising officers to pull the car over.

The officers arrested Mr Connors and took him to Newtown Police Station, where he was charged on Monday night with his mother’s murder.

Friends and neighbours say the mother and two sons were a quiet family who kept to themselves.

However they raised concerns about Mr Connors’ mental health, which they claimed had deteriorated recently.

One woman, who knew Mr Connors since he was a child, said he had started hearing voices in his head over the past year.

During the same time he had also become withdrawn, rarely leaving his Florida Street home.

“Over the past 12 months he had just fully isolated himself,” said the woman, who asked not to be named.

“Before that he was fine, he had normal conversations and everything.

“He had always been a pretty good kid growing up. He has had a hard life, he only had his mum. It was only Mum and the two boys.”

Childhood friend Daniel Ikin-McKinnon said Mr Connors, who went to Sylvania High School, had a serious motorbike crash a few years ago that required him to have a full facial reconstruction.

He was on strong medication in the aftermath.

“He never seemed like the type to do anything like [this],” he said.

“[He was] just like a normal kid to me, we just did what most teenagers do … hang out [and] do dumb shit that we found fun but nothing extreme. Just kids being kids.

“This would have never been who I thought would do something like this.”

Neighbour Kerrin Willis once lived in the same townhouse complex as the family.

She remembered Ms Connors as a nice, quiet woman.

“I never had a problem with her,” she said.

“She would get out the front of the house on the weekends and clean the front yard. She worked five days a week.”

It is understood Ms Connors’ body was found wrapped in a blanket, with a significant head injury and covered in blood.

Miranda Local Area Command Superintendent Michael O’Toole said the older brother was “very distraught” about what had happened.

“He is the one that came across the incident and called police to attend,” he said.

AAP, Ava Benny-Morrison and Rachel Olding

Turnbull government considering banning laptops on some international flights

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Qantas Dreamliner on Qantas website Photo: QantasPrime Minister Malcolm Turnbull says is considering a United States-style ban on airline passengers bringing laptop and tablet computers into the cabins of some international flights.
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In March, the US – quickly followed by Britain – introduced the prohibition on electronic devices on flights from a number of countries in the Middle East and North Africa.

US authorities are now considering extending the ban to flights from Europe, triggering concerns of chaos on transatlantic routes.

Experts have warned the new security protocol could mean longer security lines, heightened delays, boarding gate confusion, and yet more hassles for passengers.

Asked on Tuesday if the government was considering a similar restriction on large electronic devices brought from some international hubs, Mr Turnbull said the government was “looking at it very closely”, and taking advice on the matter.

“We’re working very closely with our partners and, in due course, any announcements will be made formally through the Transport Minister,” he said.

At the time of the initial US announcement, the government said it had no plans for such a change.

On Tuesday, Transport Minister Darren Chester said “the government continuously monitors shifts in the threat environment domestically and overseas to ensure we have the best security arrangements in place to meet the challenges we face”. ‘Enormous interruptions’

Aviation safety consultant Geoffrey Askew – a former Qantas executive responsible for security and safety – said such a ban would have a huge impact on passengers and airlines, particularly when first put in place and especially if applied to flights from to the US.

“You would have to introduce some measure at screening points where laptops could be taken from passengers and taken to the hold,” he said.”The logistic of doing it would be significant and the interruption … would be enormous.”

John Coyne, a national security analyst with the n Strategic Policy Institute, said the United States’ original laptop ban came from intelligence relating to a specific threat, and believed would be unlikely to follow suit without a similarly defined threat.

“If there’s no specific threat or risk, then they’ve got to carefully examine it – is the measure just going to cost hundreds of millions of dollars and not have any fundamental additional impact on security?” Dr Coyne said.

“If the government has specific intelligence indicating a specific threat or risk in relation to laptops [on flights] to and from , then as sure as I’m sitting here they would ban them from being carried.”

Dr Coyne said banning laptops from cabins raised the issue of whether security screening devices were good enough to detect explosive devices. and its allies needed to continue to review screening processes as terrorist groups continued to innovate to find news ways to bring explosives on board, he said.

A Qantas spokesman said ‘s largest airline was closely monitoring the issue and was in regular contact with the government and regulators.

The American laptop ban applies to flights originating from 10 airports in Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Lebanon, Egypt, Kuwait, Qatar and Morocco.

Britain’s measure applies to inbound flights from Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, Tunisia and Saudi Arabia.

Mr Turnbull’s remarks came as US media reported that President Donald Trump had disclosed classified details to Russian officials, allegedly concerning terrorist plots involving laptops.

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TheatreRumoursKen Longworth

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RELATIONSHIP ROMP: The cast of Rumours, which is being staged in St Matthew’s Anglican Church Hall, in Georgetown.EYEBROWS were raised when acclaimed American playwright Neil Simon penned a farcical comedy called Rumors in 1988.
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Simon was renowned for his down-to-earth and warm use of comedy to look at people’s relationships.

Nonetheless, Rumors proved to be a laugh-raiser with United States audiences, who generally aren’t fans of farce, and Simon in 1990 paid tribute to renowned British writers of farce by developing a version set in London.

That rewrite, given the English spelling Rumours, has been a hit worldwide, with actors and audience members alike finding it to be fun.

Newcastle actor Steve McLauchlan so enjoyed playing several years ago one of the Rumours’ central characters, a well-to-do lawyer who tries to hide what appears to have been a suicide attempt by a prominent politician, that he put his hand up for the same role in a production by Newcastle G and S Players Comedy Club that opens on June 2. And he won it.

His character, Ken Gorman, and wife Chris (played by Sandra Monk), also a lawyer, are the first arrivals at a dinner party being held at the home of Britain’s Deputy Minister of Finance to celebrate the 10th anniversary of his marriage.

They find the man lying upstairs, with a gun in his hand and a bullet wound in an ear lobe. His wife and servants aren’t in the house, and the meal hasn’t been prepared.

The couple, who have their own problems, try to keep what has happened from subsequent arrivals.

But the cover-up become increasingly desperate. And each pair also has troubles, with one husband and wife having had their luxury new car sideswiped on the journey.

Ultimately, two policemen turn up, for an unexpected reason.

The cast also includes Geoff McLauchlan, Jan Hunt, Peter Eyre, Kim MacKay, Erol Engin, and Natalie Burg, with Bob Spargo and director John McFadden as the cops.

Steve McLauchlan says there is a lot of cleverness in the play, “but actors have to work hard on it, not only in delivering the lines but presenting the characters in such a way that audience members can relate to them”.

His character, for example, is almost deafened by a gun unexpectedly firing a bullet.

Rumours is being staged in St Matthew’s Anglican Church Hall, in Wentworth Street, Georgetown, as a dinner show, with performances on Fridays, June 2 and 16, Saturdays June 3, 10 and 17, and Sunday, June 11.

The meal begins at 7pm. Dinner and show tickets are $40.

There will also be a show only matinee on Sunday, June 11, at 2pm; tickets $20.

Bookings: 0432 886 149.

Attorney General Mark Speakman asked to decide on Folbigg baby killings review case

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FOUR babies died, a Hunter mother was convicted of their killings and the community was rightly shocked, angered and saddened by the loss of those innocent, vulnerable lives.
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It has been 14 years since Kathleen Folbigg was sentenced to 30 years’ jail for the crimes that horrifiednot only the Hunter, but the nation. There the matter would have ended,with a motherpaying the penalty for the worst crimes imaginable.

But like another case involving a Hunter mother and the death of her baby –Lindy Chamberlain’s conviction forthe murder of baby daughter Azaria –there have been questions about the Folbigg convictions for some time, and from credible quarters.

It has been nearly two years since Newcastle University Legal Centre and three Newcastle barristers lodged a petition with NSW Governor David Hurley seeking a judicial review in the Folbigg case, and nearly four months since it has been with Attorney General Mark Speakman.

Supporters of a review believe it is not unreasonable to ask for a decision based on the strength of material before the Attorney General, and the number of years Folbigg has already served.

Folbigg was convicted of killing her four babies after a jury was convinced of the Crown case beyond reasonable doubt. But just one report in the petition for a review –that of respected n forensic pathologist Professor Stephen Cordner –raises significant doubt about those convictions.

Professor Cordner found there was no pathological or medical basis for concluding homicide in any of the Folbigg baby deaths, which raises serious questions about how their mother came to be convicted of murdering three of her babies, and the manslaughter of a fourth.

A second report by a British expert directly contradicts what the jury was told –that were no reported cases in the world of four babies in one family dying of sudden infant death syndrome.

Our judicial system relies on convictions only after the Crown meets a high standard –proving a case beyond reasonable doubt. But when there is reasonable doubt about convictions, it also provides for a judicial review.

The community needs to have faith in a justice system that can accommodate an extraordinary response to an extraordinary set of circumstances. That response needs to be made in a timely fashion.

Issue: 38,493.

Three girls ‘took stolen vehicle on 500km drive’

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Three girls have been stopped by police after driving a stolen vehicle more than 500 kilometres from Queensland to the NSW Mid North Coast, police say.
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When officers approached the four-wheel-drive in Taree South on Monday afternoon, they allegedly found a 15-year-old girl in the driver’s seat, with her two friends, aged 13 and 12, in the passenger seats.

Police said the Nissan Murano, which belonged to one of the girls’ relatives, had been reported stolen from outside a house on the Gold Coast on Monday morning.

The same vehicle was spotted at a service centre on Bucketts Way in Taree South about 4pm on Monday.

Police allege the 15-year-old girl had driven the vehicle nearly 500 kilometres from the Gold Coast to Taree with her two friends before police caught up with them.

Inspector Ben Atkinson, from the Manning-Great Lakes Local Area Command, said the girls told police that they were on their way to Sydney.

He said it was remarkably lucky that no one was injured.

“They’ve driven 500-odd kilometres on one of the busiest pieces of road in the country. You have trucks, other motorists, people with caravans and novice drivers. The risk is pretty high,” he said.

The oldest girl had been dealt with under the Young Offender’s Act, and all three children had been placed in the care of the NSW Department of Family and Community Services.

The incident comes less than a month after a 12-year-old boy was stopped by police in Broken Hill after he attempted to drive across on his own.

The boy, who was reportedly tall and more mature looking than his age, was about 1300 kilometres into his planned journey from Kendall, near Port Macquarie, to Perth when highway patrol officers pulled him over on April 22 when they noticed his car’s bumper dragging along the ground.

“Checks revealed the driver to be a 12-year-old boy travelling from Kendall, NSW, on his way to Perth,” a police spokesperson said at the time.

The boy told police he was planning to visit relatives in Western .

He was issued with a caution for the illegal use of a conveyance, failing to pay for petrol and unlicensed driving. /*\n”,color:”purple”, title:”Girls stopped”, maxWidth:200, open:0},{lat:-27.97500, lon:153.40210, text:”

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Man, 37, dies after being stabbed in the leg in a Wagga driveway

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A man has died in a Wagga Wagga driveway after he was stabbed in a suburban park before stumbling down a street and collapsing outside a home.
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Emergency services were called to French Place about 3.45am, arriving to find the 37-year-old man in a driveway with a serious leg injury. Paramedics treated the man’s injuries, but he died at the scene.

Police believe two men had been fighting in a small park between French Place and Toy Place, where one man was stabbed. He then stumbled away and collapsed in the driveway, where he later died. The home is not believed to be connected to the attack.

A 28-year-old man handed himself in to police about 10am.

Acting Inspector Ryan Sheaff said the 28-year-old man, from the suburb of Tolland, was assisting police with their inquiries, but no charges had been laid.

He said it was believed the men were known to each other. The deceased man was from Junee, north of Wagga Wagga.

Strike Force Bonarius was formed to investigate the man’s death and police are believed to be searching for the weapon used in the attack.

Forensic services examined the front yard of the home as police kept both ends of the small street blocked off.

Detectives from Wagga Local Area Command were investigating the death.

Neighbours were shocked to find the small cul-de-sac blocked off as a crime scene on Tuesday morning.

“It’s terrible,” one woman said. “I’m just shocked, we didn’t hear anything last night.”

Another neighbour said there had been fights previously in the suburb, but nothing like this.

“People have rows, but this is a bit surprising,” he said.

“I’m worried because there are kids in the street and there are maniacs running around killing people.”

Anyone with information is urged to contact Wagga Police or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

The Daily Advertiser /**/

Rain, hail or shine, there’s lots to see and do this weekend

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SATURDAYPaddock Sessions 2017 Saturday and Sunday, 1.30pm to 8pm, Taer Angwidd Farm, Wollombi. Come for the day with a picnic blanket or camp. Market and food stalls and a line-up includingImogen Clark & Band, This Way North,Joe Mugovan,Finnian Johnson and Abby Dobson.
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Lovedale Long Lunch10am to 2pm, Saturday and Sunday. A progressive-style lunch where food and wine lovers are invited to discover the wonders of Lovedale.

Step Back into King Street Heritage Festival 2017 10am to 3pm, King Street, Raymond Terrace.

2017 Hunter Innovation FestivalSaturday and Sunday, various venues. Forums, workshops and more. For the program of events go tohunterinnovationfestival成都桑拿/program.

The 2017 Hunter Innovation Festival is on this weekend.

Lorna Jane Warehouse Sale Saturday, 9amto 5pm, Sunday, 9am to 3pm, Newcastle Entertainment Centre, Broadmeadow.Back by popular demand; up to 60 per cent off activewear; access to exclusive products.

Planning Your Dream Kitchen10am to 11.30am, HIA Home Inspirations Centre,17 Murray Dwyer Circuit, Mayfield West. A free seminarfor anyone who would like to avoid the pitfalls and get the best bang for their buck in renovating their old kitchen or building a new one.

Chemical Clean Out 9am to 3.30pm,Glendale TAFE, Frederick Street, Glendale.You can drop off paints, garden chemicals, pool chemicals, hobby chemicals, motor oils and fuels, batteries, gas bottles, fire extinguishers, acids and alkalis, and fluorescent tubes and globes. Only household quantities are accepted.

One Night in Dungog 5.30pm, James Theatre, Dungog.Cocktail party followed by a screening of the very best short films from the 2016 Dungog Short Film Festival.

SUNDAYRSPCA Million Paws Walk 8.30am to 2pm, Morpeth Common, Morpeth. Activities for you and your pet; children’s activities; competitions; live music; giveaways; market and food stalls.

2017 Hunter Memory Walk & Jog Tulkaba Park, Teralba.Take part in a3km or 6.5km walk or run. Also, there will be raffles, food stalls, entertainment and special guests.The event raises funds to support the work of Alzheimer’s NSW.

Blast From The Past Rock and Roll Picnic 10am to 3pm, Toronto foreshore. Music; food and market stalls; Show and Shineand a children’s entertainment area.

NRL Newcastle Knights vs Penrith Panthers at McDonald Jones Stadium, Broadmeadow. Main game kick-off 2pm.

Annual WALK-A-THON and FUN RUN8.30am, CB Alexander College, Tocal Road, Tocal.Walk or run 5km or 10km. Raffles; craft stalls; food and drinks. Adults$20 walk, $10 run; children (15 and under) $5 walk or run.

Africa Day Celebration10am to 4.30pm, Islington Public School. Free event for all the family to enjoy. Colourful fabrics, fashion, food stalls, market stalls and workshops, plus wine tasting, art, music and dance.

Vintage Farm Display and Market Day9am to 3pm,Clarence Town Courthouse.

The Sebel Kirkton Park Wedding Open Day10am to 2pm, 336 Oakey Creek Road, Pokolbin. Bridal experts; live entertainment;handmade workshops; local wine and produce as well as goodie bags, prizes and giveaways.

2017 Variety NSW Bash8am, Bar Beach. Two-time Paralympian Maddie Elliott OAM will wave the starters flag for the 26thVariety NSW AHA Bash. The Maitland local will start the cavalcade of 80 Variety Bash cars from Bar Beach on the week-long adventure to support Aussie kids in need.The Variety Bash will visit Gilgandra, Cowra, Narrandera, Yass, Bathurst and Muswellbrook and return to Bar Beach on May 27.

The Fashion Circle 10am to 2pm, Club Maitland City, Arthur Street, Rutherford. Quality pre-loved clothes, shoes and accessories. Entry $5.

SAVE THE DATEFor a night of food, film and fun head to Casuarina Estate on Hermitage Road in Pokolbin on May 27. Doors open at 6pm for wine and beer tasting served with canapes plus a three-course dinner. The event celebrates the life of winemaker Brian McGuigan, who will host thedinner and recount tales of his life in the Hunter Valley. Book atstickytickets成都夜网.au.

MARKETSHamilton Clocktower MarketsSaturday, 8am to 2pm, James Street Plaza, Hamilton.

Hunt & Gather Markets Saturday, 9am to 2pm, Gregson Park, Hamilton.

Tea Gardens Village Market 9am to 1pm,Myall Quays Shopping Centre.

Hunter Street Organic Food MarketSaturday, 9am to 3pm, Hunter Street Mall, Newcastle.

Hunter Wine Country MarketsSaturday, 9am to 3pm, De Bortoli Wines, 532 Wine Country Drive, Pokolbin.

Newcastle City Farmers MarketSunday, 7am to 2pm, Newcastle Showground, Broadmeadow.

Adamstown Lions MarketSunday,8am to noon,corner Glebe and Brunker roads, Adamstown.

ARTS & CULTURENewcastle MuseumRemembering the Pasha Storm (including VR display); Shadows of Sacrifice; A Ticket To Paradise?.

Cessnock Regional Art GalleryLocal Artist Uncovered: works by Marc Brabander. Until July 2. Also,Wild Learning –Get To Know Your DSLR Camera With Ivan. Saturday, 10am to 1pm.

Newcastle Art GalleryLaunch event –Abstraction: Celebrating n Abstract Women Artists, 11am to 12.30pm Saturday. Until July 23. Also, Magic Mike. Until May 28.

Maitland Regional Art GalleryDavid Capra: Teena’s Bathtime; Vanessa Turton:Welcome to WOOF WOOF.Until May 28.Lionel’s Place: Lionel Lindsay from the MRAG Collection. Until April 8, 2018.Jim Anderson: Lampoon, An Historical Art Trajectory 1970-2017; Locust Jones: Back to the Dark Ages.Until June 18.Frank Murri: The Prime Ingredient in a Big Piece of Pi; Colonial Afterlives: A Salamanca Arts Centre Exhibition.Until July 23.

Old Fire Shed GalleryIt’s New Art 2017. Until December 18.

Lake Macquarie City Art GalleryScanlines. Until June 25. Water: This Precious Liquid. Until July 2.CLICK: Schools in Focus. Until June 25.

Wallsend District LibraryNikon-Walkley Press Photography Exhibition. Until May 28.

Muswellbrook Regional Arts CentreEbb & Flow: Untethered Fibre Artists;The Lady & the Unicorn: Arthur Boyd & Peter Porter;Creature: Max Watters Collection. Until July 2.

Timeless TextilesThe Breath of Felt; Lumpy. Until June 4.

The Lock-UpJamie North: Slidings; Sally Bourke: Brutal. Until June 11.

CStudios Art GalleryDouble Vision –Land and Sea. Paintings by Peter Erson Smith and Kay McFarlane Smith. Until May 27.

Art Systems WickhamTattoo ARI Project: Dan Arnold, Ash Dosen, Cristyn Franks, Braden Gill, Ruth Hughes, Jeramy Lewandowski, James Matthews, Lisa Stratigos, Danny Giles.Until May 28.

Gallery 139AMBEDO: Julia Flanagan, Matthew Tome. Until June 4.

Alchemy Art SpaceNepal Exhibition. Until May 26.

World of Brass Sunday, 2pm to 4pm,Lake Macquarie Centre for Performing Arts, Warners Bay.Cardiff Northlakes Brass Band performance.

Newcastle Studio Potters & Back to Back GalleriesHARMONY by Holly Marlin and Kara Wood. Ends Sunday.

Watt Space Student Gallery What IS Art? Until June 4.

Front Room Galleryat Newcastle Art School Diploma of Visual Arts 2017. Until June 2.

THEATREAnyone for Breakfast? Husbands and wives who are having affairs (or trying to have them) are involved in a night and morning of amusing confusion in Derek Benfield’s comedy. Club 71, at St Peter’s Hall, Hamilton. Saturday; dinner and show from 7pm.

Snugglepot and CuddlepieThe gumnut babies head through the bush on a journey and meet Mr Lizard, Mrs Snake, the big, bad Banksia Men and others; lively musical from May Gibbs’ book. Young People’s Theatre, at its Hamilton theatre. Saturday at 2pm and 7pm.

Two to TangoBright double bill: Last Tango in Little Grimley, in which a small town theatre faced with closure decides to stage a sex comedy; and Haiku, moving play with a mother revealing that her autistic daughter voices Japanese-style poetry. DAPA, at DAPA Theatre, Hamilton. Friday and Saturday at 7.30pm, until May 27, plus 2pm matinees on Sunday, May 21, and Saturday, May 27.

VelvetMarcia Hines leads a musical cast as it looks through disco, dance, music and circus at the problems of people in a nightclub. Organised Pandemonium and Strut & Fret, in the Aurora Spiegeltent, Civic Park, until June 4: Tuesday to Friday, at 7.30pm, Saturday at 5pm and 8pm, Sunday at 3pm and 6pm.

MUSICAdamstown Uniting ChurchSaturday, Salon Days:Music from the Golden Age of Palm Court Orchestras. Sunday, Carole, Joni & Carly –The Songwriters That Changed The World.

Anna Bay TavernSaturday, Mardmax.

Argyle HouseSaturday, Argyle’s 4thbirthday party.

Hotel CessnockSaturday, Outerphase.

Battlesticks BarSaturday,Jade Lee Wright.Sunday,Nicholas Connors.

Beach HotelSaturday, Trataka. Sunday, The V-Dubs.

Bellbird HotelSaturday, Dean Kyrwood. Sunday, Hendo’s Jam.

Belmont 16sSaturday, Cruzers, Matt Gaudry. Sunday, Backbeat Duo.

Beresfield Bowling ClubSaturday, Defaced.

Blackbutt HotelSaturday, Captain Risky.

The BradfordSaturday, Witchery.Sunday, Tiali.

Burwood InnSaturday, DJ Dan Phelan.

Cambridge HotelSaturday, Northlane,Hands Like Houses.

Cardiff RSL ClubSaturday, Project X.

Catho PubSaturday, Layth Gunn.Sunday, Eye On You.

Central Charlestown Leagues ClubSaturday, Daniel Arvidson.

Central HotelStroudSaturday, Ngariki.

Charlestown Bowling ClubSaturday,Hayden Johns.

Clarendon HotelSaturday, Karen O’Shea.

Club KotaraSaturday, Paul Watters.

Club LemonTreeSaturday, Joel Oakhill.

Club RedheadSaturday, Viagro.

Commercial Hotel MorpethSaturday, Zac & Ben.

Country Club Hotel Shoal BaySaturday, DJ Ules.

Criterion Hotel CarringtonSaturday,Roxy. Sunday, Matt McLaren.

Criterion Hotel WestonSaturday, The V-Dubs.

Crown & Anchor HotelSunday,Zane Penn Duo.

Customs HouseSaturday,Jackson Halliday. Sunday, Chad Shuttleworth.

D’Albora MarinaSunday,Ben Travis.

Denman HotelSunday, Sarah Christine.

Duke Of WellingtonSaturday, The DuoTones.

East Maitland Bowling ClubSaturday, Melbourne Street. Sunday,Norm Bakker.

The EdwardsSaturday, The Owls, dave, Nicholas Connors, Mahala Williams, e4444e.

dave.

Exchange HotelSaturday, Hummingbirds.

FinnegansSaturday, Brooke Evers.

FogHorn BrewhouseSaturday, Melody Feder.

Gallipoli Legion ClubSaturday, Yes Commissioner.

Gateshead TavernSunday, The Way.

George TavernSaturday, Banddits.

Grand Junction HotelSaturday, Frankenbok, Zombonimo. Sunday, Alby Pool.

Great Northern Hotel TeralbaSaturday,Chad Shuttleworth.

Greenroof HotelSaturday, Ben Travis.

Gunyah HotelSaturday, Overload. Sunday, Shivoo.

​Hamilton Station HotelSaturday, The Wildbloods,Magnus,Yours Alone.

Harrigan’s PokolbinSaturday, Gen-R-8, Greg Bryce, Dos Eager.

Honeysuckle HotelSunday, Lisa Hunt.

Hotel CessnockSaturday, Bernie Ayrton.

Hotel DelanySaturday, Code Red.

The Junction HotelSaturday, Frets With Benefits.

Junction InnRaymond TerraceSunday, Troy Kemp.

Kent HotelSaturday,The Fedz. Sunday, Grant Walmsley.

Khartoum HotelSaturday, Brazillian Brothers.

King Street HotelSaturday, Reecelow.

Lake Macquarie Yacht ClubSunday, Bernie.

Lass O’GowrieSaturday,The No Such Things,The Fonzies.

Lizotte’sSaturday, A Tribute To Woodstock. Sunday,n Dance and Talent Centre.

Lochinvar HotelSaturday, Jason Ray.

Mark HotelSaturday, Kim and Mik.

Mary EllenSaturday, The Cassettes. Sunday, Jon Schatz.

Mavericks On The BaySaturday, Zane Penn. Sunday, Jason Bone.

Mavericks On DarbySaturday, Dave Owen.

Merewether SurfhouseSunday,Jerome.

Mezz Bar at Wallsend DiggersSaturday, The Years. Sunday, Damien.

Morisset Country ClubSunday, Darren Rolling Keys.

Murray’s BrewerySaturday, Amy Fredes. Sunday, James Osborn.

Nag’s Head HotelSaturday, Pap & That.

Neath HotelSaturday, Reg Sinclair.

Newcastle DiggersSaturday, Smokin Rosie.

Newcastle Jockey ClubSaturday,Jordan Fleming.

Northern Star HotelSaturday,Mark Wood.

Pedens CessnockSaturday, The Bad And The Ugly.

Pelican RSL ClubSaturday, Whiskey Business.

Pippis At The PointSaturday,Jon Schatz. Sunday, Ashley Knight.

The PourhouseSaturday, Sami.

Premier HotelSaturday, Shivoo. Sunday, The Years.

Prince of Wales HotelSaturday,Wesley’s Edge.

Queens Wharf HotelSaturday, Todd Schmoo, Troy Kemp. Sunday, Blues Bombers.

Railway Hotel CessnockSaturday, Pistol Pete.

Raymond Terrace Bowling ClubSunday, Phil McKnight.

Royal Federal HotelBranxtonSaturday, Outlaw Ave.

Royal Hotel SingletonSunday, 2 To The Floor.

Royal Motor Yacht Club TorontoSunday, Kelly Hope.

Rutherford HotelSaturday, Dai Pritchard.

Seabreeze HotelSunday, Sami.

Shenanigans at the ImperialSaturday,Elisa Kate.Sunday, Heather Price.

Shortland HotelSaturday,Scully.

Singleton DiggersSaturday, Dr Love.

Snake Gully HotelSaturday, Soundabout.

South Newcastle Leagues ClubSaturday, Bonny Rai.

Stag and Hunter HotelSaturday, Tim Hulsman.

Stockton Bowling ClubSaturday, DJ Symon.

Stockton RSLClubSaturday, Voodoo Rhythm Shakers.

Sunnyside TavernSaturday, Emily Rose.

Swansea HotelSunday, Karen O’Shea.

Swansea RSLClubSaturday, Bounce.

Tea Gardens Country ClubSaturday, Rock Oz.

Tea Gardens HotelSaturday, Phil McKnight.

Tilligerry RSLSaturday, Loose Bazooka.

Toronto DiggersSaturday, John Noble.

Toronto WorkersSaturday,Scratch. Sunday, Mick Jones.

Town Hall HotelSaturday, Logan.

Victoria Hotel HintonSaturday,Kellie Cain. Sunday, Todd Schmoo.

Wangi Wangi RSLClubSunday, Lennie Live.

Warners At The BaySaturday,Wicked.

Warners Bay HotelSaturday, Hell Rad.

Westfield KotaraSaturday, Tim Harding.

Wests New LambtonSaturday, Bowie: Ashes To Ashes, Loko.

Wickham Park HotelSaturday, Plastic Voyage. Sunday, Greg Bryce, Fishfry + Pow Wow.

MOVIESA Dog’s Purpose(PG) A dog looks to discover his purpose in life over the course of several lifetimes and owners.

A Street Cat Named Bob(PG)The true feel good story of how James Bowen, a busker and recovering drug addict, had his life transformed when he met a stray ginger cat. (Regal)

Alien: Covenant(MA 15+) The crew of a colony ship, bound for a remote planet, discover an uncharted paradise with a threat beyond their imagination.

Disney Jr at the Movies: Mickey and the Roadster Racers(G) Mickey Mouse and his pals racearound the globe.

Don’t Tell(M)The story of a young woman who fought back after enduring sexual abuse at a prestigious private school.

Sara West in a scene from Don’t Tell.

Fairy Tale: Dragon Cry(M)Natsu Dragneel and his friends travel to the island Kingdom of Stella, where they will reveal dark secrets, fight the new enemies and once again save the world from destruction.

Fences(PG)A working-class African-American father tries to raise his family in the 1950swhile coming to terms with the events of his life. (Regal)

Get Out(MA) A young African-American man visits his Caucasian girlfriend’s mysterious family estate.

Going In Style(M)Three senior citizens in their 70s decide to rob a bank. (Lake Cinema)

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2(M)The Guardians must fight to keep their newfound family together.

Jasper Jones(M)On the night that Jasper Jones, the town’s mixed race outcast shows him the dead body of young Laura Wishart, Charlie’s life is changed forever. (Regal)

Hidden Figures(PG)The story of a team of female African-American mathematicians who served a vital role in NASA during the early years of the USspace program. (Regal)

John Wick: Chapter 2(MA)After returning to the criminal underworld to repay a debt, John Wick discovers that a large bounty has been put on his life.

King Arthur: Legend Of The Sword(M)Robbed of his birthright, Arthur comes up the hard way in the back alleys of the city. But once he pulls the sword from the stone, he is forced to acknowledge his true legacy – whether he likes it or not.

Loving(PG)The story of Richard and Mildred Loving, a couple whose arrest for interracial marriage in 1960s Virginia began a legal battle that would end with the Supreme Court’s historic 1967 decision. (Regal)

Snatched(MA 15+)A young woman persuades her ultra-cautious mother to travel with her to paradise.

The Case For Christ(PG) Ajournalist struggles with his wife’s newfound faith in Christ.

The Fate Of The Furious(M)A mysterious woman seduces Dom back into a world of crime that he can’t seem to escape.

The Met Opera: La Traviata(E)Sonya Yoncheva brings her acclaimed interpretation of the doomed courtesan Violetta Valéry to Live in HD audiences for the first time, opposite rising American tenor Michael Fabiano as her lover, Alfredo. (Event)

Their Finest(M)A British film crew attempts to boost morale during World War II by making a propaganda film after the Blitzkrieg. (Lake Cinema)

The Osiris Child: Science Fiction Volume One(MA)Set in the future in a time of interplanetary colonisation, an unlikely pair race against an impending global crisis and are confronted by the monsters that live inside us all.

The Zookeeper’s Wife(M)Zookeepers Antonina and Jan Zabinski helped save hundreds of people and animals during the Nazi invasion.

Viceroy’s House(PG)Lord Mountbattenis tasked with overseeing the transition of British India to independence.

Whiteley(M) A visual journey into the life and legacy of one of ’s most celebrated artists.