LNP backs po­lice chases to stop ‘hoons’

The Australian - - QUEENSLAND DECIDES - SARAH ELKS

LNP leader Tim Ni­cholls has de­nied putting pol­i­tics ahead of lives af­ter an­nounc­ing he would re­vive Queens­land’s dan­ger­ous po­lice car-chase pol­icy to stop Townsville kids “hooning” and “do­ing burnouts”.

The pol­icy saw 10 peo­ple killed in just three years.

Mr Ni­cholls an­nounced a six­month trial of the pol­icy in Townsville, which has three mar­ginal La­bor seats. Youth crime is a ma­jor is­sue in the area. In 2010, then-coro­ner Michael Barnes over­saw a land­mark in­quest into the deaths of 10 peo­ple who died fol­low­ing po­lice car chases. His find­ings saw chases ef­fec­tively banned ex­cept when the driver was in­volved in a mur­der or was an im­mi­nent threat to life.

Mr Ni­cholls yes­ter­day in­sisted he had taken se­ri­ously Mr Barnes’s re­port but said we should have “more trust in our po­lice”.

Both La­bor and the LNP yes­ter­day promised to boost po­lice num­bers in the next term by 535 of­fi­cers.

The LNP said this would cost $108m, while La­bor said its num­bers would in­clude a counter-ter­ror­ism unit with 85 new po­lice of­fi­cers and spe­cial­ists at a cost of $53.8m for the spe­cial­ist unit.

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