Melbourne ‘trolley man’ in court on burglary charges after heroic attempt to stop terror attack
A homeless man hailed a hero in Australia after he used a shopping trolley to try to stop a knife-wielding terrorist has appeared in court facing burglary charges.
Michael Rogers tried to ram attacker Hassan Khalif Shire Ali, who had stabbed three people and was lunging at police officers with a knife in Melbourne earlier this month.
After the attack, Rogers was dubbed “trolley man” and an online fundraiser for him raised $145,000 (£82,000) before being closed this weekend.
But on Saturday he appeared at a Melbourne magistrates’ court charged with two counts of burglary, two of theft and committing an indictable offence while on bail.
The 46-year-old is accused of breaking into a city cafe and stealing $500 and a basket, and also of stealing a bicycle.
Details of the other charges have not been reported but it has been said that the offences are alleged to have been committed before his attempts to stop the 9 November terrorist attack.
Rogers handed himself in to police on Friday night after reading media reports that he was wanted for questioning.
He was bailed by magistrates on Saturday, despite police opposition, with conditions including a curfew, not entering the city centre and staying at an apartment rented for him by a homeless charity.
After the hearing, he told Melbourne newspaper The Age: “I’m glad I’ve been given another chance and I’ll give it my best shot.
“It’s nice to know that people do still think that I’m worthy of moving on in life and putting my old stuff behind.”
National Homeless Collective’s Donna Stolzenberg, who started the campaign, told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation that the money raised will be held in a trust fund for him.
An accountancy firm has offered to oversee the fund and give financial advice, she added.
Rogers is due to appear in court again on 27 November.