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4519.0 - Recorded Crime - Offenders, 2010–11 Quality Declaration 
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 09/02/2012   
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Contents >> Summary, Australia >> OFFENDERS

OFFENDERS

There were a total of 371,040 offenders proceeded against by police in Australia during 2010-11. This was a 1.1% (4,029) decrease from the 375,069 offenders that police proceeded against in 2009-10. The rate of offenders dealt with by police in 2010-11 was 1,892 offenders per 100,000 people aged 10 years and over; a decrease from the 2009-10 rate of 1,941 offenders per 100,000 people aged 10 years and over. (Table 2.1)

The number of female offenders decreased by 1,551 (or 1.9%, to 82,502 female offenders) between 2009-10 and 2010-11, compared with a decrease of 2,669 male offenders (or 0.9%, to 287,632 male offenders). Males accounted for more than three out of every four offenders (78%) in 2010-11. (Table 2.1)


Principal offence

Nationally, the most prevalent principal offences for offenders were: Public order offences (19% of all offenders), Acts intended to cause injury (19%), Theft (17%) and Illicit drug offences (15%). There was minimal change in the distribution of the main principal offence types across the offender populations between 2009-10 and 2010-11. (Table 2.1)

Offenders, Selected principal offence - 2008-09 to 2010-11
Graph: Offenders, Selected principal offence—2008–09 to 2010–11


Subdivision

Nationally, the most prevalent principal offences at the published subdivision level for offenders in 2010-11 were Assault (18% of all offenders) and Theft (except motor vehicles) (15% of total offenders). Assault was the most prevalent subdivision in 2008-09 (19% of total offenders) and 2009-10 (18% of all offenders), while Theft (except motor vehicles) had increased from 13% in 2008-09 and 14% in 2009-10. (Table 2.2)

The most prevalent principal offence at the subdivision level for male offenders was Assault (20% in 2008-09, 19% in 2009-10 and 18% in 2010-11). For female offenders, the most prevalent principal offence at the subdivision level was Theft (except motor vehicles) (26% in 2008-09, 28% in 2009-10 and 27% in 2010-11). (Table 2.2)


Sex

Public order offences and Acts intended to cause injury were the main principal offence divisions for male offenders (20% and 19% respectively), followed by Illicit drug offences (16%). Female offenders were most commonly proceeded against for Theft as their principal offence (30%), followed by Acts intended to cause injury (18%) and Public order offences (15%). Females were twice as likely as male offenders to have a principal offence of Theft (30% compared with 14%) and Fraud and deception (4% compared with 2%). (Table 2.1)

Offenders, Selected principal offence by sex
Graph: Offenders, Selected principal offence by sex



Age

Offending rates peaked in the 15 to 19 year age group with a rate of 5,657 offenders per 100,000 persons aged 15 to 19 years in 2010-11. After the age of 15 to 19 years, offending rates decreased steadily as offender age increased. Between 2009-10 and 2010-11, offender rates decreased across the younger age groups (under 35 years), while offenders in the age groups over 35 years increased, with the exception of those aged 65 years and over. (Table 2.3)

Offender rate(a), Age - 2009-10 to 2010-11
Graph: Offender rate(a), Age—2009–10 to 2010–11


For all age groups, males had higher rates of offending than females. Males aged 15 to 19 years had the highest offender rate at 8,323 offenders per 100,000 males aged 15 to 19 years. The highest rate for females was also for those aged 15 to 19 years at 2,827 offenders per 100,000 females aged 15 to 19 years. Compared with 2009-10, offending rates decreased for most age groups in both sexes with the exception of males aged 35 to 64 years, and females aged 40 to 44 and 50 to 59 years. (Table 2.3)

Offender rate(a), Age by sex
Graph: Offender rate(a), Age by sex


Although offender rates decreased with age for both males and females over the age of 15 to 19 years, for all age groups over 15 to 19 years, male offender rates were at least three times higher than the rates for females. For offenders aged 50 years and over, the ratio of male to female offender rates progressively increased as age increased. Offender rates of males aged 65 years and over were nearly five times higher than those for females aged 65 years and over. (Table 2.3)

In addition to overall offender rates varying by age, the type of principal offence that an offender was proceeded against by police also varied by age. Based on the median age of offenders for each principal offence type, offenders were younger for Unlawful entry with intent (median age 18 years), Robbery and extortion (median age 19 years), Theft and Property damage (median age of 21 years for both offence types). Offenders were older for the offences of Sexual assault (median age 33 years), Homicide (median age 31 years) and Offences against justice (median age 30 years). (Table 2.4)

Offenders, Principal offence(a) by median age
Graph: Offenders, Principal offence(a) by median age






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