Request: The Port Arthur Massacre

This is the first request post! Nyssa mentioned The Port Arthur Massacre in a comment on a previous post. She was even nice enough to include a link. After doing some more research this is what I came up with. To find out more detailed information click here. Thank you again Nyssa and everyone should go check out her blog.

The Port Arthur Massacre all began on April 28th, 1996. By the end of the rampage, 35 people were left dead and another 37 were seriously injured.On the morning of April 28th, 28 year old Martin Bryant began his horrible rampage at the ruins of the Port Arthur prison colony. This was a popular tourist site in south-eastern Tasmania, Australia. The first to fall victim to Bryant were an elderly couple that owned a local business.

After committing his first murders, he then drove to the Port Arthur historic site. Acting as if nothing had ever happened, Bryant parked his car near a cafe’ and purchased his lunch. Around 1:30pm, he then entered the Broad Arrow Cafe’ where he removed a AR15 rifle from his bag. He opened fire, killing 22 people. 19 were killed by head shots. He then moved onto the parking lot and fired at random people, killing several. He killed a tour bus driver and three passengers, as well as others who were taking cover.

Later on, he switched to a FN FAL military rifle. He got into his car and drove toward the park entrance. Along the way he ditched his vehicle and killed a mother and her two young children who were trying to escape.

He then went to the tollbooth area where he held up the driver of a BMW at gunpoint. He then killed the 4 people inside the car and drove towards the Seascape guesthouse. Along the way he saw a Toyota that had two people, a man and woman. Bryant forced the man into the truck of the vehicle and killed the woman. He arrived at the guesthouse around 2:00pm.

There he shot at passing vehicles, injuring two more. He then released the man from the truck of the car, handcuffed him to a railing inside the guesthouse and set the BMW on fire. 6 hours later a team from the Tasmanian Police Special Operations Group arrived and an 18 hour stand off began.

Bryant was captured the following morning when he set fire to the guesthouse and ran outside, his clothes on fire. Bryant initially pleaded not guilty to the 35 murders but after the prosecution began presenting evidence, changed his plea to guilty. He is now serving a life sentence in Hobart’s Risdon Prison without possibility of parole. In Australian terms his prison papers are marked “Never to be Released”. This is very rare in Australia; the majority of Australian murder sentences allow the possibility of parole after a long prison term.

All I can say about this is “Wow.” I don’t understand how one person could just go out and kill that many people. The fact he had all those weapons, high powered ones at that, scares the hell out of me. Here you have people just visting a tourist spot, probably hanging out with friends and family and then bam. You’re in the worse predicament a person could be in. Sure, we have killers here in the states that have high body counts, but those were over years, not in a day like this guy. I’m glad to know that he won’t be getting out of prison though. I’m guessing they don’t have the death penalty in Australia?


~ by B on July 14, 2006.

3 Responses to “Request: The Port Arthur Massacre”

  1. Crazy spree murders…

    I have actually read some debate on what constitutes the difference between spree murder and serial murder. Some murders that spanned weeks have been classified as spree murder. The debate lies in the idea of a “cooling off” period between each murder. Of course, what makes this all the more tricky is the tendency of some serial murderers get braver and braver and start killing in a higher frequency. Then some of their murders may fall into the spree category. The DC Snipers I think were classified as spree murderers.

  2. Very creepy topic! Thanks for an interesting and unique blog! I will be returning.

  3. Did that guy ever make any kind of statement on why he went off to kill all those people?

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