Southern Commander's Message

Commander Bradley Currie has responsibility for the Southern Command, which includes the Southern Desert, Alice Springs and Tennant Creek and Barkly Divisions. 

The Southern Command continues to have varied outcomes regarding crime statistics; ongoing success regarding the downward trend of offences against the person inclusive of domestic violence offences has continued, and whilst it is evident that property offences are trending down throughout 2019, the year on year results remain high for both Alice Springs and Tennant Creek due to increases observed in late 2018.

There has been a 27% decrease or 605 less incidents of offences against the person in Alice Springs. This included a 29% decrease in total assaults and 11% decrease in reported sexual assault offences. In Tennant Creek, there has been a 15% reduction in offences against the person; this includes a 16% decrease in assaults from year on year statistics to the end of June 2019. It is evident that policing efforts such as the introduction of Police Auxiliary Liquor Inspectors have successfully reduced the incidents of offences against the person with ongoing strategies targeting repeat offenders, decreasing the accessibility of alcohol to problem drinkers and continued enforcement of the Liquor Act 1978.

Officers from across the command continue to maintain a proactive approach to alcohol related crime along with a focus on drug use and road safety enforcement inclusive of driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs. Police are also targeting responsible drinking in and around licensed premises to reduce the incidences of violence, antisocial behaviour and the harm caused by drugs and excessive and irresponsible alcohol consumption. The Southern Command leadership team is continuing to work with licensees to improve the amenity of areas surrounding licensed premises, as such we encourage members of the public to report antisocial behaviour to ensure we can focus our resources through an intelligence informed and evidenced based approach to crime, anti-social behaviour and public safety.

Total property offences in Alice Springs are 20% higher over the 12 month reporting period, while in Tennant Creek there has been a 17% increase in property crime in comparison to the same time last year. The increase in Alice Springs has been driven by a 68% increase in residential break-ins.  This rate is slightly higher than the last reporting period, this is despite June recording a lower then monthly average for this crime type for 2019.  The increase reflects the significant success last June for this crime type and the rolling 12 monthly statistical reporting. It is expected this rate will again continue to trend down within the next reporting with low numbers observed throughout July 2019. Similarly in circumstance motor vehicle theft and related offences remain high with a 37% increase in Alice Springs and 23 more incidents in Tennant Creek this 12 month period.

To maintain the momentum we are continuing to call on the community to assist police in combating property crime by ensuring their business premises, homes and vehicles are secured at all times. Valuables should not be left within sight or within business premises. Unfortunately, we continue to see a significant number of reported break-ins occurring through open or unlocked doors and windows. To assist in preventing crime information can be found on the Neighbourhood Watch NT webpage, as well as the NTG Biz Secure program to help eligible NT businesses improve their security against the risk of break-ins, with more information on this program being found at Biz Secure.

The Southern Command continues to work closely with other government and non-government agencies via integrated response models to case manage high risk youth and target offenders and hotspots as part of ongoing preventative measures to reduce property crime rates. There are also a number of operations being planned and undertaken in Alice Springs, Tennant Creek and surrounding communities during the winter months and Police are continuing to work with a number of agencies through the ‘Breaking the Cycle’ initiative conducting joint patrols with Territory Families, Housing Officers and Tangentyere Council to address crime and anti-social behaviour.

We are now well into the cooler months with a steady increase in tourist numbers and visitors to the region. During this time you will see police out and about keeping people safe at concerts, markets and a large number of events including the Henley on Todd and Red Centre NATS. We will continue to attend community and major events and in doing so will maintain a pro-active focus on responsible drinking in and around licensed premises and road safety enforcement in an effort to reduce the incidences of violence, anti-social behaviour and harm that is attributed to excessive and irresponsible alcohol consumption. Too often, police see the results of unsafe drinking practices and the effects that alcohol misuse has on the community. We want people to enjoy themselves and we will be targeting those that seek to spoil events for others due to their poor behaviour and decisions.

With children now back at school our road policing activities will focus on school zones whilst continuing to target drink and drug driving along with speeding to ensure the safety of all community members and visitors to our region. Please slow down, drive safely and keep an eye out for children crossing the road.

Southern Command Police relies on information and support from the local community. You are encouraged to continue to report antisocial behaviour, all crimes and suspicious behaviour via 000 if the matter is urgent, or to 131 444 or via Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000. Reports received, allows police to address offending promptly and ensures our intelligence teams are able to direct patrols to identified crime and antisocial hotspots within the Southern Command’s area of responsibility.