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Australia'Sweet, innocent' Courtney Herron should have been safe: friend

01:30  31 may  2019
01:30  31 may  2019 Source:   9news.com.au

Parkville police patrols stepped up after woman's body found in Melbourne's Royal Park

Parkville police patrols stepped up after woman's body found in Melbourne's Royal Park Police today identified the woman as 25-year-old Courtney Herron, of no fixed residence. Ms Herron's body was discovered among a group of logs by dogwalkers in Royal Park in Parkville about 9:25am. © AAP Courtney Herron. Detective Inspector Andrew Stamper of the homicide squad told reporters today Ms Herron had suffered a "horrendous bashing". Members of the public have left floral tributes at the spot where Ms Herron's body was found, as police increase their presence in the area in a bid to reassure the public.

A childhood friend of murdered Melbourne woman Courtney Herron was let down by a system that was meant to protect her, ahead of a silent vigil set to be attended by thousands.

The hour-long gathering will take in Royal Park tonight, not far from where the 25-year-old was found dead last Saturday.

Jessica Bateman, who became close with Ms Herron during their high school years, said police should have returned the homeless woman to her family during a recent interaction.

Death of woman in Vic park: man charged

Death of woman in Vic park: man charged Victoria Police have charged a man over the death of Melbourne woman Courtney Herron who was murdered in an attack described as "particularly horrendous".

'Sweet, innocent' Courtney Herron should have been safe: friend © Supplied Courtney Herron was found dead in a Melbourne park. 'Sweet, innocent' Courtney Herron should have been safe: friend © Today Jessica Bateman was friends with Ms Herron in high school.

"Her mother had put out a missing persons report and police had picked her up with an acquaintance on May 14," Ms Bateman told Today.

"They released her. They should have detained her so her mother could come pick her up.

"But because she's 25, she's an adult."

Tonight's vigil will be the fourth memorial in the past year for a woman killed in a public space in Melbourne, following the deaths of Eurydice Dixon, Aiia Maasarwe and Natalina Angok.

"Everyone putting flowers there at the scene, it would have amazed her," Ms Bateman said.

"She would have been so happy."

'Sweet, innocent' Courtney Herron should have been safe: friend © Supplied 'Bubbly, friendly girl': Courtney Herron was 25.

Ms Bateman said the spate of deaths has changed her perception of Melbourne.

Man accused of killing Courtney Herron identified as Henry Hammond

Man accused of killing Courtney Herron identified as Henry Hammond Homeless man Henry Hammond, 27, was charged overnight and fronted Melbourne Magistrates Court on Monday morning.

"I'm Melbourne born and bred, I don't feel safe at night any more," Ms Bateman said.

"I used to walk through parks but not anymore.

"This should not be happening in Melbourne, we're supposed to be a safe city.

"It's just ridiculous this is happening to women, especially being left in public places.

"It's just horrible."

Ms Bateman said she wanted her friend to be remembered as "the bubbly, friendly girl she was".

"She was trusting of everybody, gullible but in a childlike manner - a sweet, innocent manner," she said.

"She did not deserve what has happened to her at all."

'Sweet, innocent' Courtney Herron should have been safe: friend © AAP Tributes to Ms Herron in Royal Park. A silent vigil will be held tonight to remember the Melbourne woman.

Ms Herron's father John yesterday released his first statement since the alleged murder.

"Our beloved Courtney was the victim of a fatal assault. A person is now in custody," the statement reads.

"My daughter's death is an unimaginable tragedy for our family. Please respect our right to grieve in private."

Homeless man Henry Hammond, 27, has been charged with Ms Herron's murder.

His case will return to court on September 16.

Read more

Loved ones gather for Courtney Herron’s funeral.
Mourners have gathered for the funeral of homeless woman Courtney Herron, more than a week after she was allegedly murdered in a Melbourne park. Loved ones of Ms Herron, 25, met at the St Dimitrios Greek Orthodox Church in Moonee Ponds this morning. Her casket was adorned with pink lillies and white roses. Others laid flowers at the door of the church. 1/3 SLIDES © AAP Ms Herron's casket was adorned with pink and white flowers. 2/3 SLIDES © AAP Loved ones of Courtney Herron at St Dimitrios Greek Orthodox Church this morning. 3/3 SLIDES © AAP Ms Herron will be buried next to her grandfather.

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