Legal observers who were present at the brawl outside a Collingwood pub at the weekend say alcohol was to blame and not “gang behaviour”.
Flemington Kensington Community Legal Centre executive officer Anthony Kelly said volunteers went to the 66 Records label launch at the Gasometer Hotel on Saturday night due to fears of police racial profiling.
He dismissed claims 200 people were involved in the brawl and said the issue was alcohol not ethnicity.
Dressed in high vis vests, the legal observers said they were there to ensure police and private security staff did not infringe on civil and legal rights.
The lawyers said blaming the weekend violence on race was “simplistic and incorrect”.