Media Release: NSW Recorded Crime Statistics 2013


Full report - NSW Recorded Crime Statistics 2013 (pdf, 1.4Mb)

Release date: Thursday, 10 April 2014

Statewide trends

Most major categories of crime in NSW either fell or remained stable over the 24 months to December 2013, according to the latest quarterly crime report released today by the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research.

Seven of the major offences showed significant downward trends: robbery without a weapon (down 11.2%), break and enter dwelling (down 13.3%), break and enter non-dwelling (down 10.5%), motor vehicle theft (down 12.9%), steal from motor vehicle (down 5.0%), steal from person (down 11.8%) and malicious damage to property (down 8.1%).   Eight offences were stable.

Two offences increased across the state. They were fraud (up 13.2 per cent) and indecent assault, act of indecency and other sexual offences (up 7.8%).

A large proportion of the increase in indecent assault, act of indecency and other sexual offences has come from an increase in reports by child victims. There have also been increases in the reporting of historical child indecent assaults and from grooming/procuring offences.

Unlike previous years, the rise in fraud is mainly due to unauthorised use of credit cards rather than failing to pay for fuel at service stations (i.e. service station "drive-offs").

Recorded incidents of failing to pay for petrol actually fell markedly in the final four months of 2013. The fall is likely due to a change in police policy rather than an actual fall in the incidence of the offence.

Since 1 September 2013, service stations have been required to report petrol theft by fax. This may have made it more difficult for some service stations to report petrol thefts. Recorded incidents of this offence dropped sharply after 1  September.  

Non-domestic assaults, which had been in decline, are now stable. In the 24 months to December 2013, there was no significant change in the number of recorded non-domestic assaults either across NSW as a whole, on licensed premises, in the Sydney Local Government Area, or in the Kings Cross freeze precinct.  

Regional trends: Greater Sydney

Increases in indecent assault, act of indecency and other sexual offences were recorded in three parts of Greater Sydney: the Inner West (up 41.6%), the Outer South West (up 9.0%) and the South West (up 11.5%).  

Several other locations in Greater Sydney also experienced significant increases in recorded crime. Three areas (the Northern Beaches, Outer West & Blue Mountains and Ryde) experienced increases of more than 20 per cent in stealing from a retail store.  

Sutherland experienced a 23.7 per cent increase in break and enter dwelling. Significant falls in break and enter dwelling were recorded in a large number of areas: Blacktown (down 25.8%), the Central Coast (down 23.1%), the City and Inner South (down 9.4%), the Eastern Suburbs (down 28.2%), the Inner West (down 17.7%), North Sydney and Hornsby (down 30.8%) and the Northern Beaches (down 21.3%).  

Regional trends: Outside Greater Sydney

Although Greater Sydney accounted for the vast majority (79%) of fraud incidents, the growth in fraud affected a number of areas in regional NSW, including the Central West (up 32.8%), Coffs Harbour-Grafton (up 41.5%), Richmond-Tweed (up 18.6%) and the Southern Highlands and Shoalhaven (up 58.3%).  

Apart from fraud, most parts of regional NSW experienced either stable or falling crime trends. The regional falls in break and enter non-dwelling and motor vehicle theft were particularly noteworthy; with 9 out of 13 statistical areas showing substantial falls in one or other or both of these offences. 

Other changes of note

The recorded incidence of assault police rose substantially (up 18.1%, from 2,234 offences in 2012 to 2,639 offences in 2013 ).  

As in past reports, a number of drug offence categories increased. These included possession/use of cocaine (up 16.9%), possession/use of amphetamines (up 5.7%) and dealing/trafficking in cannabis (up 8.4%).  

Increases were also recorded in prohibited and regulated weapons offences (up 15.2%), breach bail (up 6.0%), other offences against justice procedures (up 17.9%) and transport regulatory offences (up 20.3%).    

These changes are more likely to reflect increased enforcement activity rather than increased crime. 

Although highly variable, shooting incidents exhibited no significant upward or downward trend over the past two years. 

Further enquiries: Dr Don Weatherburn (02) 9231-9190

Copies of the report: