4513.0 - Criminal Courts, Australia, 2011-12 Quality Declaration 
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Contents >> Children's Courts >> Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander defendants - South Australia - Children's Courts


ABORIGINAL AND TORRES STRAIT ISLANDER DEFENDANTS

South Australia

In the Children's Courts in 2011-12, 812 defendants (29%) in South Australia identified as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander.

Graph Image for DEFENDANTS FINALISED(a), Children's Courts, Indigenous Status, South Australia

Footnote(s): (a) Excludes ANZSOC Division 14 and Subdivision 041 (see Explanatory Notes paragraph 50-51) and organisations

Source(s): Criminal Courts, Australia



The proportion of males and females was similar for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander defendants and non-Indigenous defendants: 21% of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander defendants were female compared with 20% of non-Indigenous defendants.

Proportionally, the spread of defendants across age groups was similar for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and non-Indigenous defendants. 17 year olds were the largest age group in the Children's Courts, representing 22% of all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander defendants and 26% of all non-Indigenous defendants.

Graph Image for DEFENDANTS FINALISED(a), Children's Courts, Indigenous Status(b) by age, South Australia

Footnote(s): (a) Excludes ANZSOC Division 14 and Subdivision 041 (see Explanatory Notes paragraph 50-51) and organisations. (b) Excludes defendants with an Indigenous Status of not stated.

Source(s): Criminal Courts, Australia



Between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander defendants and non-Indigenous defendants, there was slight variation between the offence categories. The three main offences for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander defendants adjudicated in South Australia were: unlawful entry with intent (22%), acts intended to cause injury (21%) and theft (16%). For non-Indigenous defendants, the three main offences were: acts intended to cause injury (22%), theft (18%) and unlawful entry with intent (13%).

When comparing sentences received by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander defendants and non-Indigenous defendants, the proportions of custodial and non-custodial orders was similar. In South Australia, 15% of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander defendants proven guilty were sentenced to custodial orders compared to 13% of non-Indigenous defendants. Defendants aged 16 to 17 years had the highest proportion of custodial sentences for both Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and non-Indigenous defendants.

Graph Image for DEFENDANTS PROVEN GUILTY(a), Children's Court, Indigenous Status(b), Custodial orders by age, South Australia

Footnote(s): (a) Excludes ANZSOC Division 14 and Subdivision 041 (see Explanatory Notes paragraph 50-51) and organisations. (b) Excludes defendants with an Indigenous Status of not stated.

Source(s): Criminal Courts, Australia



For Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander defendants sentenced to a non-custodial order in the Children's Courts in 2011-12, 17 year olds and 16 year olds both accounted for just under one-quarter (23%) of defendants. The age spread for non-Indigenous defendants was similar, with 28% of 17 year olds sentenced to a non-custodial order followed by 22% of 16 year olds.

The age group that least commonly received a non-custodial order varied between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and non-Indigenous defendants:
  • 3% of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander defendants aged 19 years and over were sentenced to non-custodial orders
  • 2% of non-Indigenous defendants aged 10 to 12 years were sentenced to non-custodial orders.

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