School holidays wrap up – Northern Command

Northern Territory Police have wrapped up a school holiday operation which occurred throughout Arnhem Land, Tiwi Islands, Nhulunbuy, Jabiru, and surrounding areas during the 2019 mid-year school holidays.

The focus was to proactively target alcohol and illicit substances, in conjunction with other agencies, to prevent significant harm occurring to community members over a sustained period of time.

Initial figures have shown a significant reduction in property crime throughout the Northern Command during this time compared to the same time last year. Unlawful entries dropped by 78 percent with only eight reported in 2019 compared to 37 in 2018. Stealing offences also dropped to six from 15. Nine incidents of criminal damage were reported, a noticeable drop from the 24 incidents reported during mid-year school holidays last year.

Police unfortunately saw a rise in offences against the person with ten arrests for breaching domestic violence orders, seven more than 2018. Police attended 30 domestic violence incidents in 2019 compared to nine last year. Reports of aggravated assaults remained the same with both 2018 and 2019 reaching 11.

Traffic operations saw just over 100 infringement notices issued with 45 of those for speeding and nine for driving unregistered or uninsured motor vehicles. Seven infringements were issued for driving unlicensed and 40 infringements were issued for failing to wear a seatbelt. One person received an infringement for low-range drink-driving. Three motorists were arrested for high-range drink driving and drive disqualified. Two people were issued with notices to appear for high-range drink driving with one also caught driving unlicensed. Eleven crashes, six with injuries, were reported compared to eight the same time last year.

Liquor and drugs were not scarce during the school holiday operation with 58.75 litres of alcohol destroyed and 24.9 kilograms of kava seized. 33 liquor infringement notices, six summary infringement notices and 11 drug infringement notices were issued. Five notices to appear were issued with two of those for drug related offences, two for supply kava and one for operating an unregistered business. One arrest was made for possess a trafficable quantity of kava. A number of search warrants were executed during this period which resulted in the arrest of a 21-year-old male. A 24-year-old female was issued with a notice to appear for supplying drugs in Arnhem Land.

Superintendent Dan Whitfield-Jones said this level of reduction can only be achieved with the ongoing support of the community and working in cooperation with other agencies as a holistic response to addressing crime.

“By going back to basics to directly target recidivist offenders, the movement and supply of illicit substances and alcohol as well as participating in engagement programs and activities, everyone has worked together to significantly reduce harm across each community which is something we all should be extremely proud of.

“My staff and I look forward to continuing this collaborative approach in the communities in order to further reduce crime on a longer term basis,” he said.