Kalgoorlie, WA: Charges after statue of pioneer Paddy Hannan beheaded

A man has been charged after he allegedly cut off the head of the statue of a Goldfields pioneer on Kalgoorlie’s main street.

Police allege the 38-year-old man decapitated the statue of Patrick ‘Paddy’ Hannan between 11pm Wednesday and midnight along Hannan St – named after the man whose statue was damaged.

Located outside Kalgoorlie’s Town Hall, the statue was erected to commemorate Paddy Hannan whose 1893 discovery of gold sparked the Western Australian gold rush, and lead to the founding of Kalgoorlie, which was originally named Hannan’s Find.

The 38-year-old has been charged with one count of unlawful damage by summons and is due to front a local court at a later date.

The statue’s head was eventually found nearby by paramedics and is being kept at the local council offices for safekeeping.

A barrier was erected around the headless statue as police tried to track down those responsible.

The incident prompted the City of Kalgoorlie-Boulder to issue a statement.

“The city is deeply disappointed by this act of vandalism which not only defaces a significant piece of our city’s history, but also disrespects the memory of Paddy Hannan and the hardworking prospectors who played a vital role in shaping our community,” it said.

“The city will continue to assist the police with this ongoing investigation, and pending an outcome will commence planning restoration works.”

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