Hit-and-run victim Michael Bowden. Picture: Supplied
Hit-and-run victim Michael Bowden. Picture: Supplied

'Show some humanity': Family's hit-and-run plea

FAMILY are appealing for the driver behind a fatal hit-and-run in Weipa to "show some humanity" and come forward.

Michael Bowden, 20, a diesel fitter with Rio Tinto, was just 100m from home when he was run down and killed on Saturday about 2.50am.

"We are absolutely shattered,'' family member Denica Russ told The Courier-Mail.

"We'd hope anyone with a bit of humanity would come forward,'' she said.

The Cape York mining town hosted the Weipa Fishing Classic on the weekend, the biggest event of its annual calendar, which attracts hundreds of anglers and families from out-of-town and interstate.

Police Detective acting Inspector Rob Campbell said it was "difficult to fathom" how a motorist could drive off.

"We're keeping an open mind to the state of the driver,'' he said.

Mr Bowden was walking home from a party when he was fatally struck on Northern Avenue, the main street in Weipa, a few hundred metres from the Police station

Dashcam footage of the fatal hit and run could help police identify the driver, police say.

Police have called for witnesses to come forward, and have asked the community to report any vehicles with fresh damage.

Family and friends have described Mr Bowden as a keen motorbike rider and loving son.

He had been at a fishing competition earlier in the day, and had been returning home from a friend's house when he was struck by the vehicle at 3am on Northern Ave. He died at the scene.

Hit-and-run victim Michael Stephen Bowden was a keen motorcyclist. Picture: Supplied
Hit-and-run victim Michael Stephen Bowden was a keen motorcyclist. Picture: Supplied

The young man had moved to Weipa from Ravenshoe two years ago to complete a fitter and turner apprenticeship with mining company Rio Tinto, and wasn't far off completing his trade.

Family members and friends expressed their grief on social media, and said they are struggling to come to terms with Michael's death.

His brother's partner Denica Russ posted on Facebook: "Our world has been turned upside down and we are absolutely shattered."

She said Michael loved riding motorbikes and enjoyed tennis and touch football. She described him as "outgoing and much loved" and said he always had a big smile on his face.

He would play with his younger cousins enthusiastically, and had a great love for his family.

As his killer remains unfound Ms Russ has called for justice for Michael, begging for anyone with information to contact police.

"We still don't know who is responsible for this horrible act and police are needing any information they can get.

"If you saw anything suspicious on Friday night (8th) or early Saturday morning (9th) please contact the Weipa Police Station or Crimestoppers as soon as possible," she posted.

"Michael was a great young man and can never be repaid for all the joy he brought into our lives. If we can give him one last gift, we would love for it to be justice."

Ben Harden posted "Rest peacefully Micky. You were a great man! Condolences to the family" while Steven Markham-Gaudion said he was "taken way too young".

Police are appealing for witnesses and for anyone who travelled along Northern Ave between midnight and 3am on Saturday to contact them.

They are hoping someone who was driving in the township on the night may have dashcam footage of the car.

A spokesman said locals should also be on the lookout for vehicles with fresh damage.

If you have information for police, contact Policelink on 131 444.



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