Mother of man shot by Gold Coast police praises officers for ‘doing their job’

The mother of a man shot by police says she “couldn’t speak highly enough” about the officers who responded to her call for help after her son “just snapped”.

Key points:

  • Officers opened fire after responding to a call for help from Paul Dubrovsky’s mother
  • Wendy Watkins says they repeatedly called out to her son, ‘drop the knives, drop the knives’
  • He was shot by police several times in the torso and is currently undergoing surgery

Paul Dubrovsky, 49, allegedly charged at police with knives during a dramatic confrontation on the Gold Coast overnight.

Mr Dubrovsky’s mother, Wendy Watkins, said she twice called police after her son walked onto the street with two knives.

“I could hear [officers] saying all the time, ‘drop the knives, drop the knives’ — they said that 20 or 30 times,” she said.

Ms Watkins said her son had been suffering from ongoing physical and mental health issues, which were compounded by a recent family tragedy and problems with alcohol.

“I’m no doctor, but I think he just snapped,” she said.

“I think everybody’s got a point where enough is enough and the system just breaks down, and I think this is how this has happened.”

Officers were called to Wentworth Avenue at Molendinar about 10:40pm on Monday after reports an armed man aged in his 40s was causing a disturbance on the street.

Superintendent Mark White said officers shot Mr Dubrovsky up to six times in the torso.

Mr Dubrovsky remains in a stable condition in the Gold Coast University Hospital.

‘What else could they do?’

Ms Watkins said she “couldn’t speak highly enough” about how police handled the situation.

“Considering what was happening, they were excellent, they were doing their job — what else could they do?” she said.

“As much as I want to punch their lights out, you have to be aware of what was actually happening, and they’re only human too.”

A crime scene was set up on Wentworth Avenue as the Ethical Standards Command investigates the shooting.

Police charged Mr Dubrovsky with two counts of assaulting police, possessing a knife in public, and acts intended to cause grievous bodily harm.

Mr Dubrovsky is due to face Southport Magistrates Court on Wednesday.