Inspector Kev Guteridge.
Inspector Kev Guteridge. Mike Knott

Domestic violence hits high

THUGS are passing through Bundaberg courts on domestic charges at a higher rate than ever before.

The total figure adds up to more than 50 per cent of those passing through Brisbane’s court — 989 orders were made at Bundaberg in 2008-2009, and 1904 went through Brisbane Magistrates Court.

It rose by nearly a third from the previous year, when Bundaberg saw 722 cases.

By comparison, Gympie’s courthouse saw 411 orders processed, Gladstone had 584, Hervey Bay and Maryborough 724, and Toowoomba made 889.

But it is not just domestic violence clogging up the Bundaberg courthouse.

Almost 4300 criminals were prosecuted on 6901 charges — hundreds more than Hervey Bay and Maryborough combined , thousands more than Gladstone, and more than double the offenders processed by Gympie.

Bundaberg police Inspector Kev Guteridge said the figures were nothing to be proud of.

“It’s disappointing,” he said.

“We would rather look at a reduction in the number of crimes committed than an increase in the number of prosecutions.”

He said Bundaberg police were particularly vigilant in prosecuting the perpetrators of domestic violence.

“The enforcement of domestic and family protection orders is a key strategy in enhancing the safety of families in Bundaberg,” he said.

“There is a significant risk to lives and people’s safety where this action is not taken.”

Inspector Guteridge maintained Bundaberg police were active in terms of law enforcement.

“The incidence of offences committed and the increase in prosecutions come down to a variety of factors including growth in population and a change in demographic,” he said.

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