By ERWIN CHLANDA
Rates of criminal offences in Alice Springs, as recorded by police, have again increased massively.
Assault has gone up 36% to 2556 offences, more than three times the corresponding national number of 790 in 2021 [ABS].
Domestic violence assault went up 45% (1668 offences), alcohol related assaults 46% (1316), house break-ins 24% (1006), commercial premises break-ins 53% (797), motor vehicle thefts 37% (449) and property damage 54% (3485).
These are statistics released today, comparing rates of offending per 100,000 population for the year ending on October 31, 2022 with the corresponding period the year before.
Only sexual assaults have decreased, by 21%. The numbers were 90 down to 72.
According to Budget Direct, in 2021 the NT had the highest rate of car thefts, averaging 4.15 thefts per 1,000 registrations. New South Wales and South Australia were among the safest states across Australia, each with close to 1.6 thefts per 1,000 registrations.
Leader of the Opposition Lia Finocchiaro (pictured), commenting on the crime rates Territory-wide, is making impassioned comments in a media release.
She says: “Behind the eye-watering crime statistics are families living in fear and business owners are being pushed to the brink.”
They are “at breaking point because the financial, physical and emotional costs are just too much to bear.
“The latest crime statistics reached new horrific levels but failed to convey the depth of the Territory’s suffering under Labor’s Crime Crisis.
“Just the safety risk for staff is too much and some businesses have already decided to shut up shop.
“Others are taking extraordinary measures to cope, such as locking their doors – during business hours.”
A police media release yesterday paints a picture of events in the town’s streets:
At 7:50pm a group of people were fighting with edged weapons on Coolibah Street, East Side. Eleven edged, two blunt weapons and a firearm were seized by police.
At 9pm up to 50 people fighting in a carpark adjacent to Railway Terrace. One edged weapon was seized, and a black Holden Commodore was observed leaving the scene.
Also at 9pm a group of people fighting on Erumba Street, Braitling. Police located two males, aged 17 and 18, with lacerations. A 30-year-old man was arrested.
Both injured males were taken to the hospital where one fled a short time later and the other underwent emergency surgery.