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KAP calls for self-defence laws that reflect NQ crime reality

Dec 1, 2023

The Queensland State government’s amendments to the Victim of Crime Assistance Act–the passing of which will raise the maximum amount of compensation victims can claim after being a victim of violence–is the outcome of the government’s own failure to act effectively to curb youth crime, according to the Katter’s Australian Party’s Clynton Hawks.

Queensland Police Service statistics show the number of assault victims has quadrupled in Townsville over the last 10 years, from 1148 to more than 4100 this year as of October.

But it’s those who are falling victim to violence in their own homes during a break-in that’s keeping Mr Hawks up at night.

“The garrison city is now home to a garrison mentality as people barricade themselves inside at night and pray,” he said.

As of October, Queensland Police Service statistics show the number of reports of Unlawful Entry with Violence annually had more than doubled in the last 10 years.

Mr Hawks said the growth in youth crime was partly responsible.  In 2013, there were just two reports of Unlawful Entry with Violence perpetrated by a juvenile.

As of October, that figure was already up to 10.

Mr Hawks, who knows all too well the trauma that comes from having your home broken into in the middle of the night, says people feel helpless to defend themselves in their own homes.

“In the ten years, more than 30,000 homes have been broken into in Townsville.  Statistically, that’s one in three.

“Over the last 10 years unlawful entries have gone from 2739 in 2013, to more than 4000 for the first 10 months of 2023, a 40% increase.

According to QPS figures, about half of all unlawful entries are committed by juvenile offenders.

“Yet the law, whether the Youth Justice Act, or the criminal code relating to self-defence, has not changed.

“The law needs to reflect the world honest citizens actually live in, not the world according to sociologists and social justice warriors in Brisbane.

“The law doesn’t sufficiently punish or deter offenders, especially juveniles.

“Nor does the law offer the householder any protection against home invaders.  The law should recognize that people have a right to defend themselves and their property in any way they see fit.

“As soon as someone enters your home illegally, the law should recognize that that person has forfeited their right to take action against you should they get hurt.

“The law needs to stand behind the occupant of the dwelling, not the perpetrator of a crime,” he said.

Michael Pugh, the KAP’s candidate for Mundingburra, says he lives in one of the most broken into suburbs in the country.

“Mundingburra, according to Canstar, has the highest rate of burglaries in Australia.

“Between now and October 2024, when the Queensland State election will occur, 5000 homes will get broken into, and 1600 cars will be stolen.

“The member for Mundingburra will leave office on election day having overseen the biggest increase in the city’s crime rate in history,” he said.

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