A man in Melbourne has plead guilty to eight charges, including reckless conduct endangering serious injury, two charges of recklessly causing serious injury and possessing an explosive substance, after he set off two homemade ‘bombs’ at the St Kilda Festival last year.
Sam Aniello Castellano, 22, set off two of the homemade devices injuring five people – including two seriously – at the annual event that attracted over 400,000 people to the St Kilda forshore to watch bands such as Tim Finn, Muscles, Gareth Liddiard, Kimbra, and Jebediah.
According to The Age, at the Melbourne Magistrates court yesterday Castellano plead guilty to eight of the charges out of the eighteen he is charged with.
The explosions happened in the afternoon on February 13th around 3.20pm and again about four hours later, at times when literally hundreds of thousands of festivalgoers were enjoying the St Kilda foreshore.
A policeman told the court that mid-afternoon he heard a noise like a large firework going off as a man felt a sharp pain and burning sensation in his back. The victim, still in shock, looked down and noticed he bleeding from shrapnel that had exploded with the bomb.
A woman who was also at the smaller stage at the time Melbourne soul act Electric Empire were playing was also hit by flying shrapnel in her back and started bleeding from a wound that required numerous stitches.
Later in the day Castellano set off another bomb, this time hitting three people including one man who said he saw a flash before his leg gave way and his show filled up with blood from a wound that required 25 stitches.
Also injured in the second blast was a man who was forced to remove a piece of metal from his left hand and a woman who started bleeding after shrapnel embed itself in her left calf.
A police explosives chemist told the court that they the devices consisted of a metal container, and could have been a “soda bomb” which holds an explosive charge. According to a friend who was shown the “homemade explosive” earlier in the day, Castellano did not mean to hurt anyone.
Castellano had been ordered to appear in the County Court in August.Write a Letter to the Editor