4519.0 - Recorded Crime - Offenders, 2017-18 Quality Declaration 
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 15/03/2019   
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EXPERIMENTAL FAMILY AND DOMESTIC VIOLENCE STATISTICS

INTRODUCTION

This chapter presents experimental data about offenders of Family and Domestic Violence (FDV) related offences from police crime recording systems. Offenders of selected offences were determined to be FDV-related based on an FDV flag as recorded by police, supplemented in some instances by information on relationship of offender to victim.

The FDV data varies across the jurisdictions due to a number of factors. Information on the scope, counting methodology and comparability of the data is available in the Explanatory Notes.


KEY FINDINGS

Around one in five offenders proceeded against by police in 2017–18 had at least one FDV-related offence. This was the case across all states and territories for which FDV data were available, with the exception of Tasmania:

  • New South Wales (24,325 FDV offenders, 19% of all offenders)
  • Western Australia (7,959 FDV offenders, 19% of all offenders)
  • Northern Territory (2,946 FDV offenders, 24% of all offenders)
  • Tasmania (1,300 FDV offenders, 13% of all offenders)
  • Australian Capital Territory (591 FDV offenders, 22% of all offenders) (FDV Tables 1–7)

Tasmanian data are restricted to only court actions against a partner/spouse/husband/wife (including former) or boyfriend/girlfriend (including ex-boyfriend/girlfriend). Total offender count for 2017–18 is not available for Victoria, please refer to the Explanatory Notes.


SEX

The majority of FDV-related offenders were male, ranging from 80% in New South Wales to 84% in the Northern Territory in 2017–18. Male offenders were proceeded against for FDV-related offences around four to five times more than female offenders. (FDV Table 1)


AGE

The median age was higher for offenders proceeded against for an FDV-related offence compared to the median age of the total offender population in all jurisdictions except for the Northern Territory. The median age ranged from 32 years in Western Australia and the Northern Territory, to 34 years in Victoria. (Table 15 and FDV Tables 2–7)


TIMES PROCEEDED AGAINST

The majority of FDV-related offenders were proceeded against only once, ranging from 74% in Tasmania and the Northern Territory, to 86% in the Australian Capital Territory in 2017–18. This is consistent with the total offender population. (FDV Tables 1 and 16)


PRINCIPAL OFFENCE

Across the selected states and territories, the most common FDV-related principal offence was Acts intended to cause injury. The proportion of FDV-related offenders proceeded against for this offence ranged from 51% in Western Australia to 78% in New South Wales in 2017–18. (FDV Table 1)


STATES/TERRITORIES

New South Wales

There were 24,325 offenders with an FDV-related offence in New South Wales in 2017–18, which equated to 352 offenders per 100,000 persons. This was an increase of 323 offenders (1%) from 2016–17. (FDV Table 2)

The number of male offenders of FDV-related offences (19,436) was four times higher than the number of female offenders (4,888). However, almost all the increase in total FDV-related offenders from 2016–17 was due to a 7% increase in the number of female offenders (up by 305 offenders in 2017–18). (FDV Table 2)

The majority of FDV-related offenders in New South Wales (81%) were proceeded against only once for an FDV-related offence during this time period (19,732 offenders). (FDV Table 2)

Almost all (97%) of FDV-related proceedings were a court action. (FDV Table 8)

Victoria

There were 15,823 offenders with an FDV-related offence in Victoria in 2017–18, which equated to 284 offenders per 100,000 persons. This represented a decrease of 806 FDV-related offenders (5%) from 2016–17. (FDV Table 3)

The proportion of male offenders of FDV-related offences was five times higher than the proportion of female offenders (83% and 17% respectively). (FDV Table 3)

Western Australia

There were 7,959 offenders of FDV-related offences in Western Australia in 2017–18, equating to 355 offenders per 100,000 persons. This was a decrease of 7% (563 offenders) from 2016–17. (FDV Table 4)

In 2017–18, there were four times more male offenders (6,424) than female offenders (1,494) proceeded against in Western Australia for at least one FDV-related offence. In comparison, there were three times as many male offenders (29,867) than female offenders (11,197) in the total Western Australia offender population (FDV Table 4 and Table 11)

The median age of FDV-offenders varied by offence type, ranging from 28 years amongst those with a principal FDV-related offence of Property damage, to 35 years amongst those with a principal FDV-related offence of Homicide and related offences, Sexual assault and related offences and Breach of violence and non-violence orders. (FDV Table 4)

Tasmania

Between 2016–17 and 2017–18, the number of offenders of FDV-related offences in Tasmania increased by 10% to a total of 1,300 offenders. This equated to 281 offenders per 100,000 persons. (FDV Table 5)

Nearly two thirds of these offenders (65%) had a principal FDV-related offence of Acts intended to cause injury (845 offenders), while Breach of violence and non-violence orders was the second most common principal FDV-related offence in Tasmania (27% or 346 offenders). (FDV Table 5)

The number of male offenders of FDV-related offences (1,067) was five times higher than the number of female offenders (230). For the total Tasmania offender population, there were three times more male offenders (8,019) than female offenders (2,370). (FDV Table 5 and Table 12)

The majority of FDV-offenders in Tasmania (74%) were proceeded against only once for a selected FDV-related offence during the reference period (959 offenders). (FDV Table 5)

Northern Territory

In 2017–18, there were 2,946 offenders of FDV-related offences in the Northern Territory, which equated to 1,404 offenders per 100,000 persons. This represented an increase of 117 offenders per 100,000 persons since 2016–17. Northern Territory had the highest FDV offender rate for the selected jurisdictions. (FDV Table 6)

There were five times more male offenders (2,463) than female offenders (481) proceeded against for an FDV-related offence in 2017–18. (FDV Table 6)

The median age of offenders ranged from 27 years amongst those with a principal FDV-related offence of Property damage to 41 years amongst those with a principal FDV-related offence of Homicide and related offences. (Table 15)

Australian Capital Territory

In 2017–18, there were 591 offenders proceeded against for FDV-related offences in the Australian Capital Territory or 164 offenders per 100,000 persons. This was the lowest rate out of all selected jurisdictions (FDV Table 7)

There were four times more male offenders (480) than female offenders (109) proceeded against for an FDV-related offence in the Australian Capital Territory during 2017–18. For the total Australian Capital Territory offender population there were three times more male offenders (2,100) than female offenders (620). (FDV Table 7 and Table 14)

The median age of offenders proceeded against for an FDV-related offence was 33 years, which was older than the median age of the total offender population 27 years. (FDV Table 7Table 15)

The majority of offenders (86%) were proceeded against only once for an FDV-related offence during the reference period (510 offenders). (FDV Table 7)


OFFENDERS OF FDV-RELATED BREACH OF VIOLENCE AND NON-VIOLENCE ORDERS

For the offenders of FDV-related offences population, an offender is only counted once irrespective of how many offences they may have committed within the same incident or how many times they were dealt with by police during the reference period. If a single offence is processed then that is assigned as the offender’s principal offence. Where multiple offences are committed by an offender, they are assigned a principal offence based on the perceived seriousness of the offence as outlined by the National Offence Index (NOI).

A Breach of violence or non-violence order offence is often recorded in conjunction with other offences which tend to be ranked higher on the NOI (for example, Serious assault resulting in injury). Where this occurs the higher ranked offence is presented as the principal offence.

This section introduces a new count of offenders proceeded against for an FDV-related Breach of violence or non-violence orders. A principal offence has not been applied to this count, rather this is a count of all offenders who were proceeded against by police at least once for an offence of Breach of violence and non-violence orders (ANZSOC 153) which was flagged as FDV-related by police or identified as being within a specified family or domestic relationship during the reference period.

More than a fifth of all offenders proceeded against for an FDV-related offence had a Breach of violence or non-violence orders recorded in 2017–18:
  • Victoria (7,699 offenders, comprising 49% of the FDV population)
  • New South Wales (7,501 offenders, comprising 31% of the FDV population)
  • Western Australia (3,382 offenders, comprising 43% of the FDV population)
  • Northern Territory (1,530 offenders, comprising 52% of the FDV population)
  • Tasmania (741 offenders, comprising 57% of the FDV population)
  • Australian Capital Territory (132 offenders, comprising 22% of the FDV population) (FDV Tables 2–7, FDV Table 13)