Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research

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NSW Recorded Crime Statistics quarterly update December 2019

Latest crime data shows increase in recorded incidents of domestic violence assault

Release date: 10.30am, Wednesday 04 March 2020

Full report: NSW Recorded Crime Statistics quarterly update December 2019, pdf 1.2Mb
Long-term trends in violent and property crime in NSW: 1990-2019, pdf 598Kb

State-wide trends

In the 24 months to December 2019, two of the 17 major crime categories were trending upwards, one was trending downwards and the remaining 14 were stable.

The offences trending upward were domestic violence related assault (up 5.0%), and steal from retail store (up 8.3%). The offence trending down was steal from person (down 7.1%).

Domestic violence related assault

Reports of domestic-violence related assault have increased among female and male victims, adult and juvenile victims and intimate partner and family violence victims.

Significant increases in domestic related assaults were found in three Statistical Areas:

  • Newcastle and Lake Macquarie (up 10.4%)
  • Riverina (up 19.1%)
  • Greater Sydney (up 5.0%) comprising: Baulkham Hills (up 27.1%), Eastern Suburbs (up 15.5%), Inner South West (up 8.0%), Ryde (up 23.6%) and Sutherland (up 49.0%).

Other noteworthy trends

  • In the 5 years to December 2019 recorded incidents of both Sexual assault (up 5.9% per year) and Indecent assault & other sexual offences (up 4.7% per year) increased significantly
  • In the 24 months to December 2019 AVO breaches increased 12.4% due to an increase in domestic violence related breaches.
  • Certain drug offences continue to rise. In the 24 months to December 2019 possess/use of amphetamines increased by 11.7%, possess/use of narcotics increased by 16.7%, dealing/trafficking in cocaine increased by 25.4% and importing drugs increased 165.2%.

Commenting on the findings, Acting Executive Director of BOCSAR, Jackie Fitzgerald, said it was unclear whether the significant increase in recorded DV assault incidents is due to an increase in reporting or an increase in offending. "Since 2017 we have seen more pro-active policing of domestic violence which could have encouraged victims to report. We also know that domestic assaults occasioning grievous bodily harm (GBH) are much more reliably reported than less serious forms of assault and these have remained stable over the past two years."

Further enquiries: Jackie Fitzgerald, Acting Executive Director 02 8346 1100
Copies of the report: www.bocsar.nsw.gov.au