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1318.3 - Qld Stats, Jul 2008  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 21/07/2008   
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RECORDED CRIME - VICTIMS, QUEENSLAND, 2007

INTRODUCTION
NUMBER OF VICTIMS
SEX AND AGE OF VICTIM
LOCATION OF OFFENCE
WEAPON USE
OUTCOME OF INVESTIGATION
FURTHER INFORMATION
END NOTES

INTRODUCTION

This article presents crime statistics relating to victims of a selected range of offences that have been recorded by Queensland police in the period 1 January 2007 to 31 December 2007. These statistics provide indicators of the level and nature of recorded crime victimisation in Queensland and a basis for measuring change over time. As not all crimes are reported to or recorded by police, other data sources can assist in providing a more comprehensive view of crime levels in society.

Depending on the type of offence, a victim in the recorded crime collection can be a person, a premises, an organisation or a motor vehicle. A person reporting a crime with multiple offences in the same incident may either be counted multiple times, or may be counted only once, depending on the types of offences committed during the incident. For example, a victim who was robbed and abducted in the same incident would be counted separately as a victim under the offences of robbery and kidnapping/abduction.
Conversely, a victim of multiple assaults in the same incident would be counted only once as the offences committed fall within the same offence group. For these reasons, it is not meaningful to aggregate the number of victims across each offence type and produce a 'total number of victims'; it is only meaningful to look at victim counts within each offence category.

For scope and coverage issues and a comprehensive list of terms and concepts used in this article please refer to the Explanatory Notes and Glossary in Recorded Crime - Victims, Australia, 2007 (cat. no. 4510.0).



NUMBER OF VICTIMS1

A new IT system QPRIME was introduced by Queensland Police in June 2007, therefore caution should be exercised when interpreting data movements between 2006 and 20072.

Compared to the annual average for the three year period 2004-2006, the number of victims recorded by Queensland police in 2007 decreased for murder, attempted murder, manslaughter, kidnapping/abduction, robbery, blackmail/extortion, unlawful entry with intent, motor vehicle theft and other theft. The offence categories recording the largest declines were manslaughter (down 28%) and motor vehicle theft (down 19%). Conversely, there was an increase in the number of victims of assault (up 0.3%) and sexual assault (up 0.9%).
VICTIMS(a), Offence category, Queensland, 1998 - 2007

1998
1999
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007(b)

Homicide and related offences(c)
Murder
64
64
78
66
59
63
56
47
59
52
Attempted murder
150
112
123
156
128
113
95
82
67
70
Manslaughter
10
14
7
14
18
4
13
3
9
6
Total homicide and related offences
224
190
208
236
205
180
164
132
135
128
Assault
18,329
18,425
18,707
20,237
20,849
19,009
18,798
19,233
19,709
19,298
Sexual assault
3,485
3,550
3,752
4,086
4,797
3,792
4,256
4,155
4,606
4,377
Kidnapping/abduction(d)
98
93
95
76
75
92
109
85
59
69
Robbery
Armed robbery
1,285
1,257
1,198
1,168
886
957
855
845
930
750
Unarmed robbery
1,246
1,213
1,159
1,382
1,160
1,111
1,036
1,058
995
1,018
Total robbery
2,531
2,470
2,357
2,550
2,046
2,068
1,891
1,903
1,925
1,768
Blackmail/extortion
78
70
63
89
57
63
58
59
78
58
Unlawful entry with intent
Involving the taking of property
56,907
56,361
58,750
55,590
51,659
47,547
42,581
37,827
37,304
32,071
Other
17,685
17,828
18,533
18,133
16,595
15,015
13,977
12,847
13,246
12,117
Total unlawful entry with intent
74,592
74,189
77,283
73,723
68,254
62,562
56,558
50,674
50,550
44,188
Motor vehicle theft
15,693
18,249
18,623
17,468
15,854
13,333
12,407
11,300
10,191
9,128
Other theft(e)
97,384
105,169
112,319
116,820
116,989
112,297
100,267
93,386
89,365
77,738

(a) The definition of a victim varies according to the category of the offence. Please refer to End Note 1.
(b) Data may be understated. Please refer to End Note 2.
(c) The offence of driving causing death is excluded as it is no longer available at the national level as not all jurisdictions can supply this information.
(d) The increase for 2004 was possibly a result of increased public awareness of these types of offences. The media and the police had established a working partnership to encourage immediate reporting of kidnapping/abduction offences and thereby increase the chances of apprehending the offenders responsible.
(e) Leaving a restaurant without paying forms part of the offence category of other theft for this collection. Queensland, however, has excluded this offence type from this category, but may include it in categories out of scope of this collection.
Source: Recorded Crime - Victims, Australia, 2007 (cat. no. 4510.0)

SEX AND AGE OF VICTIM

In Queensland in 2007, more males than females were victims of robbery (70% of victims were male), assault (62%) and homicide and related offences (61%). For sexual assault, more females (83%) were victims than males.
PERSON VICTIMS, Selected offences by sex, Queensland, 2007

Four out of every ten (40%) victims of homicide and related offences were aged 25-44 years and persons aged under ten contributed a further 17%.

The 25-34 years age group had the highest proportion of victims of assault (25% of male victims and 23% of female victims of assault were aged 25-34 years).

Of the 721 male victims of sexual assault, around one-third (240 males) were aged under ten. For female victims of sexual assault, the age groups with the highest proportions of victims were 10-14 years and 15-19 years each with 28%.

Over one-quarter (26%) of the 1,367 person victims of robbery were aged 15-19 years.

LOCATION OF OFFENCE3

In Queensland in 2007, residential locations were the most likely place of occurrence for homicide and related offences. Seventy per cent of attempted murders and 60% of murders occurred in a residential location.

Assault victims were most likely to be subjected to this offence in either a community location (39% of assault victims) or a residential location (38%). Over two-thirds (68%) of sexual assault offences occurred in a residential location.

The majority of victims of kidnapping/abduction were taken from a community location (61%) and a further 25% were taken from a residential location.

Nearly one-half (48%) of robbery offences occurred in a community location. Of the robbery offences occurring in a community location (840), 86% occurred on a street/footpath.

The majority of offences of unlawful entry with intent occurred in a residential location (61%). Other locations (13%) and retail locations (13%) were also significant contributors.

The theft of a motor vehicle was most likely to occur in either a residential location (40%) or a community location (38%).

Nearly one-third (32%) of other theft offences occurred at a retail location.
VICTIMS, Selected Offences occurring by selected locations, Queensland, 2007

Graph: Victims, selcted offences occurring by selected locations


WEAPON USE

In Queensland in 2007, a weapon was used in 71% of murders, 70% of attempted murders, 42% of robberies and 19% of assaults. A knife was the most common type of weapon in committing these offences. Nearly one-half (46%) of attempted murder victims, 31% of murder victims, 20% of robbery victims and 4.7% of assault victims were subjected to an offence using a knife. A firearm was involved in 17% of murder offences and 5.9% of robbery offences.

Of the 19,298 assault offences a bat/bar/club was used on 550 occasions and a bottle/glass on 322 occasions.

In the committing of sexual assaults, 98% of these offences did not involve a weapon.
VICTIMS, Weapon used in commission of offence, Queensland, 2007
Graph: Victims, weapon used in commission of offence

OUTCOME OF INVESTIGATION

In Queensland in 2007, 86% of the police investigations into homicide and related offences and 58% for assault were finalised within 30 days of the recording of the incident by police.

The lowest proportions of finalisations at 30 days were for victims of unlawful entry with intent (14%), other theft (22%) and motor vehicle theft (23%).
VICTIMS, Outcome of investigation at 30 days, Queensland, 2007
Graph: Victims, outcome of investigation at 30 days


Of the 110 murder investigations finalised, 97% had an offender proceeded against. Unlawful entry with intent (96%) and other theft (91%) also had high proportions of finalised investigations where the offender was proceeded against. Sexual assault (69%) and blackmail/extortion (79%) had the lowest proportions of finalised investigations where the offender was proceeded against.

FURTHER INFORMATION

Further information on this topic can be accessed in Recorded Crime - Victims, Australia, 2007 (cat. no. 4510.0).

In addition to recorded crime statistics, the ABS collects information in household surveys from members of the public on their experiences of crime.

Information for assault and sexual assault, as well as data for a range of other offences, are available from the 2005 ABS National Crime and Safety Survey (NCSS) and the 2005 ABS Personal Safety Survey (PSS). The NCSS measured people's perceptions of crime in the community and whether or not the crimes were reported to police. Detailed information about the survey results can be found in Crime and Safety, Australia, Apr 2005 (cat. no. 4509.0). The PSS measured people's experience of violence, harassment or stalking. Detailed information about the survey results can be found in Personal Safety Survey, Australia, 2005 (cat. no. 4906.0). The next NCSS will be conducted in 2008 for the 2008-09 reference period.

Caution should be exercised in making any direct comparisons between recorded crime statistics and data from ABS household surveys due to the different scope and coverage,
methods of measurement and sources of error.

END NOTES

1. The definition of a victim varies according to the offence category:
  • For murder, attempted murder, manslaughter, driving causing death, assault, sexual assault and kidnapping/abduction, the victim is an individual person.
  • For robbery, the victim may be either an individual person or an organisation. Where the robbery involves an organisation or business, the element of property ownership is the key to determining the number and type of robbery victims. If the robbery only involves property belonging to an organisation, then one victim (i.e. the organisation) is counted regardless of the number of employees from which the property is taken. However, if robbery of an organisation also involves personal property in an employee's custody, then both the organisation and employee(s) are counted as victims.
  • For blackmail/extortion, the victim may be either an individual person or an organisation.
  • For Unlawful entry with intent, the victim is the place/premise which is defined as a single connected property that is owned, rented or occupied by the same person or group of people.
  • For motor vehicle theft, the victim is the motor vehicle.
  • For other theft, the victim is either an individual person or an organisation.

2. Caution should be exercised when interpreting data movements between 2006 and 2007. A new IT system, QPRIME was introduced in June 2007. The changes to the IT system affected the way in which data about an offence was recorded for all offence types. Data for 2007 therefore may be undercounted for all offence types, however, this
is likely to be more so for property offences. Related offence information such as weapons, location and Indigenous status has also been impacted. The extent of the undercount cannot be quantified. Queensland police business processes are being reviewed in 2008 with a view to improving the quality of the recorded crime data.

3. Location of offence is the initial site where an offence occurred, determined on the basis of use or function. Any surrounding land, yard or parking area connected to the building or facility, as well as any other structures existing at the location are assigned to the same category of use. Locations which are multifunctional are categorised according to their primary function, with the exception of a multifunctional location which includes the provision of residential accommodation. Those parts used for residential purposes are classified to 'residential' regardless of the main function of the location.

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