Relentless Youth Crime Rattles Sleepy Rural Towns

May 19, 2023

The recent car thefts in Mingela and Ravenswood have led to further concern surrounding the states youth crime crisis for Katter’s Australian Party leader and Traeger MP Robbie Katter.

The cars being stolen from 90 plus kilometres from Townsville City Centre, proving that the crime may no longer being retained to just Townsville.

“There’s no denying that Townsville is a youth crime hotspot”, said Mr Katter.

“But Mingela is pushing an hours drive from Townsville, and Ravenswood is further again.

“To think that these criminals are spilling that far out of their stomping grounds, just because they can, is a real concern.

After discussing with one of the victims, Mrs Vicki Pugh, Mr Katter advised that there was no doubt these thefts had rattled these small sleepy towns.

“Of all the harsh realities that come with living in remote regions, or on cattle properties, dealing with crime and theft is not one that we normally have to worry about”, said Mrs Pugh.

“The crime is now so rampant that it is leaking out of these urban areas and into the bush.

“We used to feel safe living out of town, but now we are constantly worried about who might be creeping around on our property in the middle of the night.

Mrs Pugh advised that her and her family had spent generations working hard for what they had and were now fearful for the safety of their young children who had only ever known the freedom of living in the bush.

“In addition to our newfound fears surrounding safety, it is also concerning knowing emergency services are not just a few minutes away when you live remotely.

“Knowing that there will always be a wait time for emergency services due to our location is also playing heavily on our minds”, said Mrs Pugh.

“We currently feel that we are unable to ensure the safety of both our families and our possessions that we have worked so hard for when we live so far from any help.

“Something must be done to deal with this ridiculous rate of crime.

“The laws are there but the judicial system is failing us.

Mr Katter advised he heavily supported Mrs Pugh’s statement in relation to the judicial system and sympathised with all of her concerns.

“There is no doubt that the states current crime crisis is extremely frustrating for all Queenslanders, especially those who have found themselves as victims”, said Mr Katter.

“The Premier this week has announced a reshuffle of her cabinet, with the youth justice minister being one of the ministers on the chopping block.

“This is a start in her acknowledging that there are some real issues here.

“I am hopeful that the Premier will keep her listening ears on as the KAP continue to push for their various solutions to youth crime, including our Relocation Sentencing Policy.

“People shouldn’t be living in fear in their own homes, regardless of location.

“Something needs to change.