Lex Hall; 23/4/10
Alice Springs is on high alert this morning as five young white men aged 19 to 25 face sentencing over the bashing death of an Aboriginal trainee ranger, in a case that has set racial tensions seething in the troubled central Australian town. Timothy Hird, Joshua Benjamin Spears, Anton Kloeden, Glen Anthony Swain and Scott John Doody –all members of respectable Central Australian families – have pleaded guilty to the manslaughter of 33-year-old Donny Kwementyaye Ryder beside the Todd River last July. According to evidence given in court, the five men had been on a 12-hour drinking binge and attacked Ryder after he threw a bottle at their white Hilux utility. Dubbed the “Ute Five”, the men have been in protective custody at the Alice Springs jail for the past eight months. The jail population is 80 per cent Abriginal.