Youth justice going backwards under soft-on-crime Labor

460 young thugs fronted Rockhampton Magistrates Court last year charged with 1912 offences
• 12 juveniles fronted Rockhampton Childrens Court last year charged with 59 offences
• The number of young thugs who received a reprimand for their crimes has increased significantly over the past year under the Palaszczuk Labor Government

The latest Childrens Court Annual Report reveals Queensland’s youth justice system has gone backwards in the past year thanks to the Palaszczuk Labor Government.

Shadow Attorney-General Ian Walker said the latest figures painted a sobering picture of how Annastacia Palaszczuk’s soft-on-crime approach had started to create a youth crime epidemic in Rockhampton.

“Our youth justice system is in a mess, youth crime is out of control, thugs are running the streets and our youth detention centres are in crisis,” Mr Walker said.

“The total number of youth offenders increased last year by 1.5% – bucking the trend from the 2014/15 report which showed a decrease of 8.7% under the former LNP Government.”

Mr Walker said 10 per cent of juvenile offenders were responsible for 42% of all proven offences meaning that recidivism rates were still extremely high.

“A staggering 460 young thugs fronted Rockhampton Magistrates Court last year charged with 1912 offences, more than four charges per defendant,” he said.
“There were also 12 juveniles who fronted Rockhampton Children Court last year charged with a 59 offences which is nearly five offences per defendant.”
Mr Walker said Labor’s only response to tackle the youth crime issue in Rockhampton was to can the LNP’s tough youth justice reforms and treat these thugs with kid gloves.

“In less than two years Labor has managed to undo all the gains made under the former LNP Government and the Cairns community is now paying the price,” he said.

“The report shows under Labor, detention has decreased by 24.2%, community service has decreased by 10.9%, fines have decreased by 20.3% but immediate and conditional release has increased by 13.4%.

“Our youth justice system has gone backwards and the proof is now in black and white that the Palaszczuk Labor Government is soft-on-crime.

“These thugs now have the upper hand and know they are running the show – I fear things are only going to get worse as we move into the holiday season.

“No one wants to see another scenario like we witnessed last week in Townsville where one of these thugs allegedly breaks into someone’s home and bashes the occupant to death on their kitchen floor.”

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