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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Minister for Police and Community Safety
    The Honourable Jack Dempsey

    Tougher penalties for assaults on police delivered

    Minister for Police and Community Safety
    The Honourable Jack Dempsey

    Wednesday, August 22, 2012

    Tougher penalties for assaults on police delivered

    Police Minister Jack Dempsey says Queensland police officers will soon be given higher protection after the Criminal Law Amendment Bill 2012 was passed through parliament last night.

    In a speech made to the House, Mr Dempsey supported the Bill which increases the penalties for evading police or seriously assaulting an officer and introduces a 25-year non-parole period for the murder of a police officer.

    “Policing is a challenging occupation and officers face a wide range of risks every day, in the course of protecting the community,” Mr Dempsey said.

    “While an assault on anyone is a terrible thing, an assault on an officer is a disgraceful act which the Newman Government will not tolerate.

    “Between 2007 and 2011, almost 13,000 assaults on police were reported. That’s an average of one in every four officers being attacked.

    “We have a strong commitment to increase the number of police officers across the State and they deserve every protection we can offer them.”

    “At present, the most common fine issued for someone who evades a police officer is $300 – the same penalty as not wearing a seatbelt,” Mr Dempsey said.

    “Those who evade police officers put the community in danger, risk the lives of police officers and under the former Labor Government, walked away with nothing more than a ‘slap on the wrist’.”

    Mr Dempsey said the new penalties will send a clear message to the community that these serious offences will have serious consequences.

    “This Bill ensures the Courts have the power to lock offenders away for longer which will provide deterrents against offending, reduce the number of reoffenders and protect officers in the Queensland Police Service,” he said.

    “This Bill is a step forward for protecting those who protect the community.”

    Although the Bill was flagged for many weeks and spoken to in parliament until late last night the Labor Opposition failed to support it.

    Attorney-General and Minister for Justice, Jarrod Bleijie said the Criminal Law Amendment Bill would also increase the non-parole period for murder.

    “Under these changes, the non-parole period for the murder of a single victim will increase from 15 to 20 years and from 20 to 30 years for multiple murders,” Mr Bleijie said.

    “The offence of murder is the most heinous of all crimes and this bill is further proof of the Newman Government’s commitment to bring a hard-line approach to law enforcement.

    “This will ensure the punishment for murder fits the severity of the crime and promotes community safety and protection from these very serious offences.”

    The Criminal Law Amendment Bill 2012 will:

    * Double the maximum penalty for serious assault on a police officer from seven to 14 years;

    * Introduce a new offence for the murder of a police officer with a non-parole period of 25 years;

    * And increases evade police penalties to a mandatory $5,000 and two years loss of licence.

    * Increase the non-parole period for murder from 15 to 20 years imprisonment (for a single murder) and from 20 to 30 years imprisonment for multiple murders.

    [ENDS] 22 August 2012

    Media Contact for Minister Dempsey: Danny Donald 0439 719 116

    Media Contact for Minister Bleijie: Lisa O’Donnell 0400 986 432