Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research

Assaults increase around Lockout Zones

Full report: The effect of lockout and last drinks laws on non-domestic assaults in Sydney: An update to September 2016 (pdf, 2.9Mb)


Release date: Monday, 6 March, 2017

Assaults have increased in areas around the Kings Cross and Sydney CBD lockout precincts, a new study by the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research (BOCSAR) has found.

BOCSAR’s latest update on the effects of the so-called “lockout laws” extends the time period covered in previous research by an additional 15 months. The analysis now covers the 61 months before and the 32 months after the lockout laws came into effect.

Separate analyses of trends in non-domestic assault were examined in five separate areas [1]:

  • The Kings Cross (KX) and central business district (CBD) entertainment precincts;
  • A ring of suburbs contiguous with these precincts, called the proximal displacement area (PDA);
  • A group of four popular nightspots within easy reach of the KX and CBD entertainment precincts (Newtown, Coogee, Bondi, Double Bay), called the distal displacement area (DDA);
  • The rest of NSW (excluding the areas just mentioned).

The KX and CBD entertainment precincts continue to show downward trends in non-domestic assault (down 48.7% and 12.6%), respectively.

In the PDA non-domestic assaults initially declined but have since increased by 11.8%. Non-domestic assaults in the DDA have also increased (by 16.7%).

In the rest of NSW, non-domestic assaults continued to decline following the introduction of the lockout laws but at a slower pace.

Commenting on the findings, the director of BOCSAR, Dr Don Weatherburn, said that it looks as if the effects of the lockout laws have not yet fully played out.

“It remains the case, however, that the decline in assaults in Kings Cross and the Sydney CBD is still much larger than the increase in assaults in the displacement areas.”

Further Enquiries: Dr Don Weatherburn 02 8346 1100 (please do not call my mobile)

Copies of the report: www.bocsar.nsw.gov.au

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[1]  For maps of these areas see Figures 1a and 1b of the report.