The woman who allegedly assaulted Lismore mayor Jenny Dowell has been arrested and charged after the mayor reported the matter immediately to Lismore police.
Cr Dowell told The Northern Star that police had found the alleged assailant in a crowd in Carrington St after they accompanied the mayor through the Lismore CBD with an account of her physical description.
Lismore police have not confirmed the arrest although duty officer Inspector Wayne Crotty said the matter was under investigation.
Cr Dowell said she then returned to Lismore police station to make a statement about the incident.
She also declared she would make a quick recovery from the nasty incident.
“My ear’s still store and red, but it’ll be right. I’m not bleeding and I don’t think I’m concussed, so I’ll be fine,” she said.
While the mayor stressed the alleged assault was an “isolated incident”, she did recount numerous verbal attacks from people who were anti-fluoride over the last two years. “I’ve been called Genocide Jenny, I’ve been called Hitler… that’s happened on more than a dozen occasions by different people,” Cr Dowell said. She added that when people got into public office some people “no longer saw them as a person” or worthy of normal decent behaviour.
“You’re fair game.”
Meanwhile, she has received an outpouring of support on Facebook, with well-wishers expressing outrage over the unprovoked attack.
She said it unfolded about 3pm on the corner of Molesworth and Magellan Streets in broad daylight with several bystanders looking on.
She thanked supporters and also people who had come to her aid immediately afterwards.
LISMORE mayor Jenny Dowell has reported on Facebook that she was assaulted in Lismore CBD this afternoon by a woman angry about the fluoridation of Lismore’s water supply.
The mayor posted that the woman “slammed” the mayor’s car door against her head as she got in to end what was becoming an aggressive verbal confrontation.
The alleged assault happened about an hour ago.
“a woman (Ann?) wanted to speak to me for 5 mins about fluoride. I sat with her but for the first minute she just accused me of not listening (I was silent),” Cr Dowell posted on Facebook.
“I stood up and said I was going- she then followed me and harangued me up the street to my car then slammed the door against my head as I got into it. She shouted that I am a ‘f…ing bitch’, gave me the finger and left- I now have a sore ear and cheek- and I’m shaken.
“Thank you to the people who witnessed it and came to support me.”
The decision by Lismore City Council to fluoridate its water supply has sparked angry outbursts in the past, with shouting and aggression on display during the council meeting last December last year after councillors narrowly voted to proceed with fluoridation.
The mayor has remained an outspoken supporter of fluoridation.