4530.0 - Crime Victimisation, Australia, 2018-19 Quality Declaration 
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 18/02/2020   
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Victims of motor vehicle theft and theft from motor vehicle

The statistics discussed throughout the commentary refer to incidents of motor vehicle theft and theft from a motor vehicle that occurred in the 12 months prior to interview for the 2018-19.

Motor vehicle theft

An estimated 0.5% of Australian households (46,100) had a motor vehicle stolen, which was similar to the rate in 2017-18 (0.6%).

The majority of households that experienced motor vehicle theft (89% or 40,800) reported the most recent incident to police.

Common locations where the most recent incident of motor vehicle theft occurred include the person’s or another person’s home (57% or 26,100) and in the street or other open land (30% or 13,900).

Theft from a motor vehicle

An estimated 2.5% of Australian households (240,600) experienced theft from a motor vehicle, a decrease from 3.1% in 2017-18.

The majority of households that experienced theft from a motor vehicle experienced a single incident (86% or 207,100).

Households in capital cities were more likely than households outside of capital cities to experience theft from a motor vehicle (2.7% compared with 2.0%).

Police reporting of the most recent incident

Half of households that experienced theft from a motor vehicle (53% or 127,800) reported the most recent incident to police.

Common reasons given for not reporting to police were thinking it was too trivial or unimportant (29% or 70,500) and thinking there was nothing the police could do (12% or 28,700).

Other characteristics of the most recent incident

Common types of property stolen in the most recent incident of theft from a motor vehicle include:

  • money, a purse or wallet (43% or 103,900);
  • personal items, including handbag, jewellery, clothing (35% or 83,400); and
  • motor vehicle parts (18% or 43,200).

Common locations where the most recent incident of theft from a motor vehicle occurred include:
  • the person’s home (72% or 172,900);
  • in the street or open land (13% or 30,300); and
  • a carpark (7.3% or 17,600).