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Victorian police boss says officers showed restraint in the face of violent anti-lockdown protests

The head of Victoria's Police Association has sensationally demanded his officers not be questioned for their tactics during Melbourne's anti-lockdown riot.

Wayne Gatt implied protesters seen being roughly tackled, bashed with batons, and pepper sprayed while on the ground deserved it just for showing up.

He lashed out that those who wanted to have 'needless debates' about whether police actions in those cases were 'proportionate'.

Mr Gatt even pushed to shut down discussion of 'issues of what's right and what's wrong' arising from the protests.

Instead, he insisted brutal tactics were justified because police and the government had to 'stop nancy-pansying around' anti-lockdown demonstrators. 

Head of Victoria's Police Association Wayne Gatt (pictured) said his officers showed as 'much restraint as they could' when confronted with violent anti-lockdown protestors on Saturday

Tensions boiled over after a tense standoff between anti-lockdown protesters and police in Melbourne on Saturday

A woman, reported to be in her 70s was knocked to the ground during the violent clashes between protesters and police in Melbourne

More than 1,000 demonstrators swarmed Melbourne's CBD on Saturday in defiance of the city's stay-at-home orders. 

Ten officers were injured while dealing with the protests, including a broken elbow and broken nose, a broken finger and torn muscles. Six officers were taken to hospital. 

An elderly woman was shoved to the ground and doused with pepper spray by two policemen during the riot.

The woman was bowled over by the two cops before they fired the spray directly on her face as she lay defenceless on the road trying to shield her eyes.

Disturbing photos and video of the scene divided the public who were outraged at heavy-handed police tactics, while others felt she deserved it for breaking public health orders. 

More footage has since surfaced of a man being tackled to the ground following a wild police chase on foot during the protests in inner-city Richmond. 

The 30 second clip begins with the man running away from dozens of police officers in hot pursuit as several shocked passers-by watch on.

He eventually surrenders by putting his hands in the air as two officers catch up to him in a laneway.

He's quickly surrounded by officers who tackle him to the ground and detain him.

Voice For Victoria slammed the forceful arrest when it shared the extraordinary footage late Saturday night. 

The union boss said his officers showed as 'much restraint as they could' in the face of violent hooligans who broke through their lines. 

'We need to stop nancy-pansying around these people, and we need to stop this needless debate about the proportionality, issues of what's right and what's wrong,' Mr Gatt told reporters on Sunday.

The woman was bowled over by the two cops before they fired pepper spray directly on to her face as she lay defenceless on the road grabbing her eyes 

The injured protester is seen writhing in pain as she's helped to her feet by police

The man is seen running with dozens of police officers chasing after im on Saturday

He said his colleagues expressed concern over the increasingly violent tactics deployed by protestors.

'They came into that demonstration with the intent to hurt our members, and they succeeded against 10 of them,' he said. 

'I'm not coping looking at the 0.01 per cent of actions and looking at our members who were confronted with such overwhelming violence.'

Mr Gatt implied non-violent protesters caught in the crossfire between the angry mob and police deserved to be injured because they broke lockdown to participate.

'Those actions wouldn't have occurred if those people didn't attend an unlawful protest, no one had to be there,' he said.

Police tackle the man to the ground and surround him following the wild chase in Richmond

Protestors were also seen throwing bottles and stones at officers while an authorised vehicle was severely damaged.

Scenes escalated as police were forced to deploy capsicum spray before arresting dozens of protesters as others taunted and hurled abuse at them.

Police dodged traffic cones, bottles, flares and smoke bombs after angry protesters hurled the items at the blockade.

Shocking footage captured the moment a mob of frenzied protesters broke burst through a police line while screaming 'f*** you dogs' and trampling on officers knocked to the ground.   

Commander Mark Galliott said bottles and stones were thrown at officers while an authorised vehicle was severely damaged.

'Angry aggressive young males (were) there to fight the police, not to protest about freedoms,' he told the media late on Saturday. 

Victoria recorded 507 new cases and one death on Sunday as Premier Daniel Andrews prepare to unveil the roadmap out of lockdown once 70 per cent of eligible Victorians are fully vaccinated.

Melbourne remains in strict lockdown and has been since the start of August - as it nears an unpopular world record.

Buenos Aires, in Argentina, currently holds the record after the city endured 234 days under lockdown. Melbourne - which has gone through six lockdowns - is expected to hit 235 days on September 23. 

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