In a video uploaded by Wombat Awareness Organization on their facebook page, a man can be seen stoning a seemingly harmless wombat which was just waddling in the street. The man, wearing nothing but a blue shorts and shoes can be seen laughing along with the cameraman while he was throwing stones at the animal.
The person in question who was seen stoning the wombat has now been identified as policeman Waylon Johncock.
Who is Waylon Jonhcock?
Waylon John Johncock is a policeman serving as one of the 36 liaison officers of the state of Southern Australia. He has been serving the community as a policeman for 10 years and his job has been involved in bridging the gap between Australia’s indigenous communities and the non-indigenous people who are serving the communities as he can speak Pitjantjatjara. He was reportedly also involved in teaching young ones in these communities. Waylon Johncock is currently a Senior Community Constable in one of these indigenous communities.
Before entering the police force, the man was also a popular personality in the South Australia National Football League (SANFL) playing for Glenelg. He also won various awards in recognition for his exceptional skills in football. In 2014, he was instrumental in winning the game during the grand finals of the Southern Football League while playing for Noarlunga as he scored the winning goal in the game.
What happened to the wombat?
A wombat, which is a plant-eating marsupial, is native to Australia. As seen on the video, the wombat was just walking along the street while a car,which presumably was what Johncock and his companion was driving, was following the animal. The headlights of the car shining the light on the animal as captured on the video.
In the said video, you can see Johncock appear in the frame, wearing only blue shorts and shoes, as the person behind the camera cheers him on to get close to the animal. He then picked up a big piece of stone and threw it to hit the wombat’s head. The animal started to run to try to evade the person following it.
The person capturing the video continues to cheer Johncock to hit the wombat as he runs after the animal. He picked up another rock and continue to hit the animal with it. He hit it in the head more than once which proved to be fatal to the animal.
The local rescue group which uploaded the video, Wombat Awareness Organization, expressed their deep sadness and hope that violence against the animal would stop and never happen again.
Police are now involved
When asked for a comment on the matter, South Australia Police (SAPOL) said that they know of the incident and have started an investigation to look into it. They are looking at the video uploaded closely and have started the inquiry. They are now waiting for the formal identification of the people involved in the incident. They said that once the identification has been formally done, then they will proceed with the appropriate steps and take actions required to address the matter.
In Australia, killing a wombat is legal as it is protected as tradition hunting under the Native Title Act. However, under the Animal Welfare Act, this incident can be deemed illegal.
Wombat Awareness Organization has created a petition to get justice for the wombats with regards to the incident.