NT youth crime cops at bot­t­los

NT News - - NEWS - KIERAN BANKS Po­lice Re­porter

TRAF­FIC cops and of­fi­cers as­signed to a spe­cialised unit to bat­tle youth crime are filling shifts in front of Alice Springs bot­tleshops.

Po­lice ros­ters ob­tained by the NT News re­vealed the of­fi­cers are be­ing po­si­tioned to fill the point of sale in­ter­ven­tion re­quire­ments when gen­eral duties of­fi­cers are not avail­able.

The rev­e­la­tions come as NT Po­lice re­leased the lat­est crime statis­tics which show car thefts had in­creased eight per cent and prop­erty dam­age by 13 per cent com­pared to the same pe­riod last year.

How­ever, house break-ins dropped nine per cent and as­saults by 13 per cent.

NT Po­lice As­so­ci­a­tion pres­i­dent Paul McCue said it was be­wil­der­ing of­fi­cers had been pulled from spe­cialised units to be “se­cu­rity guards”, fol­low­ing a pub­lic cam­paign on road safety.

“This lat­est knee jerk re­ac­tion to al­lo­cate in­te­gral polic­ing units like traf­fic and youth en­gage­ment to Point of Sale In­ter­ven­tions il­lus­trates once and for all that be­ing se­cu­rity guards at take­away bot­tle shops in Alice Springs, Ten­nant Creek and Kather­ine has be­come the ab­so­lute pri­or­ity for the Ter­ri­tory gov­ern­ment and the Com­mis­sioner of Po­lice,” he said.

Act­ing South­ern Com­man­der Michael White said do­mes­tic vi­o­lence of­fences had dropped 14 per cent.

“While the num­ber of re­ported in­ci­dents re­mains high, and pres­ence of al­co­hol re­mains, we are still see­ing much lower lev­els of vi­o­lence in many of these cases when com­pared to pre­vi­ous years,” he said.

In Dar­win com­mer­cial break-ins con­tin­ued to rise with a stag­ger­ing 116 per cent in­crease.

Dar­win Metropolitan Com­man­der said Dar­win and the North­ern Sub­urbs ex­pe­ri­enced a 17 per cent in­crease in prop­erty crime over the past year.

“(This was) driven largely by an in­crease in break-ins to com­mer­cial and res­i­den­tial premises,” he said.

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