Observation on the state of Policing in NSW

Last night I was witness to a local crime involving a young teenage male wilful damage to an innocent bystanders property (namely smashing the rear windows of the vehicle in a car park) due to his rage at his girlfriend dumping him. Putting the rage and anger management issues this youth has aside, it was the response (or lack thereof) of the local police that was what made me think about writing this post.

I contacted the local police station to report the incident, which the Senior Constable duly took the information I had and advised it would be followed up. Here is where it gets interesting though.

The incident took place about 250m from the police station in the car park of Queanbeyan Town Park. Now I understand that there may have been a number of jobs already in the system, but it totally amazed me that not one copper could walk out of the station and around the corner to have a look at what had happened, and arrest the youth in question who was still hanging out in the Axis Youth Centre where he was getting his hand bandaged up, no doubt because he probably broke every bone in his hand putting it through the back window of a young mothers car who was playing with her child in the park at the time.

However from the time I reported it (along with the fact that others also called it in) a good 30 minutes pass with not one police officer ever turning up. In the end the owner of the car decided it was better to take the car with their young child home rather than wait for anything to be done by the police. I also left and it begs the question as to whether the police have done anything at all to follow up on this matter.

I would suggest that nothing will be done, based on the fact that the youth in question didn’t seem to care either that the police station was only 200m away and made no attempt to leave the scene as one might expect from someone who has just committed a crime. It was as if he knew they wouldn’t be coming any time soon if at all. Given the AXIS Youth centre also seems to be where a lot of troubled young kids hang out, it also flies in the face of Queanbeyan City Council’s website statement of: “The Axis Youth Centre is a safe and supervised, drug and alcohol free recreational space for young people aged 12-25.” It may be safe for the offenders, but I am not so sure about for the general public.

And if it is so supervised why didn’t the supervisors take the young bloke round to the police station and show him the right thing to do and maybe work with the police to get him into a program to help the young guy with his anger management problems.

Now I am not privy to the internal operations or funding of the NSW police but it seems to me that either they are severely undermanned or they just don’t seem to care about crimes like this, no doubt because the current modus operandi of the legal system in this country at the moment is they just let everyone go with a good behavior bond and don’t do it again ‘son’ warning, at which point there is no accountability by the perpetrator and no recourse for the victim.

I suspect it is probably both with the later the result of insufficient resources for the police to do anything about it anyway so they prioritise accordingly, and why bother when the magistrates hand out lollipops as part of their sentencing, they may as well not even bother except for really serious crimes where they are likely to get a meaningful conviction (which only seems to be murder of important people or terrorism these days).

Whatever the case the inability for local police to walk a few hundred meters from their station is a sad indictment on the current state of affairs, and we can only hope that something is done prior to this young mans anger issues escalating into yet another domestic violence death in this country, which is rightly a hot topic at the moment with plenty of politicians all crowing about how bad it is, but none of them seemingly able to put resources in the right place to prevent any of it from continuing to be the blight on society it is.

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