Police barred from Sydney LGBTQ+ Mardi Gras event after officer charged with murders of gay couple

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New South Wales (NSW) police have been asked not to march in this year’s Mardi Gras parade in Sydney after an officer was charged with the murder of Jesse Baird and Luke Davies.

Officers will no longer be welcome as part of the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras (SGLMG) parade on Saturday (2 March) after constable Beau Lamarre-Condon was charged with the murders of the two men, ABC News reported.

The SGLMG board said that the decision was “not made lightly”, but that the LGBTQ+ community “needs space” to grieve the deaths of Jesse and Luke.  

Organisers explained that despite some officers being part of the LGBTQ+ community, their participation in the parade could cause distress after Lamarre-Condon was charged on Friday (23 February). 

“Sydney Mardi Gras, along with LGBTQIA+ communities across the country, have been devastated by the loss of Jesse Baird and Luke Davies, whose lives were cut short,” the board said in a statement on Monday (26 February). 

“Our community needs space to grieve the loss of Jesse and Luke who, before this tragedy, would have been here celebrating with us at the festival. The board has taken the decision to request that the police do not march in the 2024 parade.”

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In response, a police spokesperson said: “While disappointed with this outcome, NSW Police will continue to work closely with the LGBTQIA+ community and remain committed to working with organisers to provide a safe environment for all those participating in and supporting this Saturday’s parade.”

Image of two missing people: Jesse Baird and Luke Davies
A police officer has been charged with the murders of Jesse Baird (L) and Luke Davies. (jessebairddd/Instagram and NSW Police)

Police are reportedly still searching for the bodies of Baird, 26, and 29-year-old Davies after the pair went missing on 19 February. Lamarre-Condon, 28, was arrested and charged after he handed himself in.

NSW police deputy commissioner David Hudson said: “Our number-one priority to locate Jesse and Luke, to give the families some solace.”

Former Network 10 TV presenter Baird was remembered by colleagues as having a “big, beautiful smile” who “lit up the room”. He had described Qantas flight attendant Luke as “the one”, they said. 

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