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Alice Springs City Council Mayor Matt Patterson said Today This morning, residents were to voice their concerns over the wave of community crime.
“We just want people to listen and understand what we’re going through here in the territory…We just want people to listen and understand what we’re going through,” he said.
“It’s scary living here sometimes.”
The open letter says “You have no right to terrorize people in their homes” and is just one of the latest efforts by locals to tackle crime in the community.
“Over the weekend in Alice Springs, we had two deliberately set house fires, two houses burnt down. We had numerous stolen cars, ram raids on buildings…a handful of homes broken into.”
He said that young criminals carry out their acts without any fear of the consequences.
“It’s been described as an actual Grand Theft Auto. These kids can do whatever they want without fear of the consequences.”
The juvenile detention system has been unable to rehabilitate young offenders, Matterson said.
“If we’re going to put a child in juvenile detention – and no one wants to see that but sometimes it’s necessary – they have to fix the environment they came from.
“It’s also the parents and the grandparents. You have to take care of them so that everyone is educated.
“A we need more police on the ground and we need safe places for these children to go.”
Data released in February showed an alarming increase in crime between 2021 and 2022.
Assaults are up 51% in a calendar year, with 2,823 reported in a city of 26,000.
Domestic violence-related assaults increased again, up 65%. Alcohol-related assaults increased by 68%.
There have been 1,886 reported cases of domestic violence and 1,521 alcohol-related assaults.
Property damage increased by 55% and commercial burglaries by 47%.
Residents vent anger in open letter
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