Australian Institute of Criminology

Skip to content

Key findings

Victims of armed robbery

The 2008 NARMP dataset contains records relating to 6,427 victims of armed robbery reported to police from 1 January to 31 December 2008. This represents an overall decrease of 2,438 victims (28%) from the first year of NARMP data collection in 2003. Compared with recent years, there was a decrease of 706 victims from the 2007 dataset (n=7,133; see Smith & Louis 2010). The number of annual victimisations recorded in the NARMP has fluctuated in the six years since it was established in 2003 (n=8,865 victims; see Borzycki, Sakurai & Mouzos 2004). An initial decline in victim numbers in 2004 (n=6,646) was followed by slight increases in each subsequent year until 2006, which was then followed by another decrease in both 2007 and 2008 (see Figure 1).

Figure 1 Individual victims of armed robbery, by year, 2003–08 (%)

Individual victims of armed robbery

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Approximately seven out of 10 victims (n=4,709; 73%) were categorised as individual persons, with the remainder being organisational victims. The percentage breakdown of victim type was similar to 2007 (74% individual persons).

Weapons used against armed robbery victims

Three out of eight jurisdictions were able to supply information for victim cases where it was possible for more than one weapon to be counted (known as ‘multiple weapons’ incidents). For these possible multiple weapon incidents however, the findings established that the average armed robbery still only involved a single weapon (1.09 weapons used in 2,295 victim cases where multiple weapons could be counted). The median number of weapons used was also one. Only seven percent were victims in incidents involving two weapons and less than one percent of victims were threatened with three weapons.

Other results indicated that:

  • knives made up the majority of weapons used to commit armed robbery (51% of 6,629 weapons listed for victims; this is a 4% increase from 2007 figures; see Table 1);
  • firearms were used to commit 13 percent of armed robberies, a three percent decrease from 2007 figures. Seven percent of all weapons specified were handguns and two percent shotguns;
  • over one-quarter of weapons were in the category of ‘other weapons’ (26%), a decrease of five percent compared with 2007 results; and
  • syringes accounted for fewer than one in 20 of the weapons involved (3%).
Table 1 Weapons used to threaten armed robbery victims, 2008a
Weapon n Armed robberies (%)
Firearms
Firearm (with no further detail) 42 1
Handgun 487 7
Shotgun 111 2
Rifle, airgun 41 1
Sawn off longarm 8 <1
Replica firearm 31 <1
Other firearm (not classified elsewhere) 113 2
Total firearms 833 13
Knives
Knife (with no further detail) 3,274 49
Scissors 3 <1
Pocket knife 2 <1
Screwdriver 44 1
Other knife (not classified elsewhere) 77 1
Total knives 3,400 51
Syringes
Syringe 177 3
Total syringes 177 3
Other weapons
Other weapon (with no further detail) 468 7
Club, baton or stick 262 4
Rock, brick or stone 44 1
Tool (not classified elsewhere) 154 2
Blunt instrument (not classified elsewhere) 62 1
Bottle, broken glass 249 4
Chemical spray 21 <1
Drug 4 <1
Explosive, bomb 6 <1
Machete, axe 24 <1
Sledgehammer 22 <1
Crowbar, metal pipe 278 4
Bow, spear, speargun 2 <1
Vehicle 5 <1
Stun gun (Taser) 2 <1
Sword 2 <1
Other weapon (not elsewhere classified) 101 2
Total other weapons 1,706 26
Weapon used (with no further detail) 111 2
Unknown 402 6
Total (unknown and no further detail) 513 8
Total 6,629

a: Multiple weapon types were listed for some victim records; therefore, total number refers to the total number of weapon types listed, not the total number of victim records

Note: Percentages may not total 100 due to rounding

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Locations in which victims were robbed

Thirty-eight percent of all victims were robbed in some sort of retail setting (including specifically listed retail locations). Forty-eight percent of victims were robbed in an open, public setting with the majority of these robbed on the street or footpath (35% of all victims). These location figures have been consistent since the NARMP began in 2003. The percentage of individual persons relative to organisational victims subjected to robbery in each of the location categories was also similar to that observed in 2007.

Individuals comprised approximately nine out of 10 victims robbed in locations classified as recreational, transport-related, open spaces, street and footpath, and other community settings (see Figure 2). Organisations made up the majority of victims in all robberies occurring in primarily commercial settings. The exceptions were the categories of corner stores, which includes supermarkets and takeaways, and wholesalers.

Figure 2 Individual and organisational victims of armed robbery, by location type, 2008 (%)a

Individual and organisational victims of armed robbery, by location type, 2008

a: Excludes individual and organisational victim records with missing location and/or organisational flag

Note: n=6,404

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Individual victims of armed robbery

The average age of an armed robbery victim, for whom valid age and gender information was recorded (n=4,638), was 30 years old, although male victims were slightly younger (29 years) than female victims (32 years). The majority of victims (63%) were aged less than 30 years (see Table 2); consistent with 2005–07 findings, 66 percent of males and 55 percent of females were aged less than 30 years.

Table 2 Victims, by sex and age group, 2008a, b
Age group (yrs) Male Female All
Male victims (%) Rate per 100,000 of this age group and sex Female victims (%) Rate per 100,000 of this age group and sex All victims (%) Rate per 100,000 of this age group n
<15 4 6.3 3 1.4 4 4.0 163
15–17 14 109.3 8 20.3 12 66.0 576
18–19 12 133.6 10 37.9 11 87.2 522
20–24 23 105.2 21 29.8 23 68.4 1,047
25–29 14 64.1 13 18.2 14 41.4 627
30–34 8 38.8 8 11.5 8 25.2 371
35–39 6 28.6 6 11.9 7 20.2 323
40–44 5 23.9 6 8.5 5 16.2 245
45–49 5 22.0 8 10.2 5 16.1 249
50–54 4 17.9 6 9.4 4 13.6 192
55–59 3 16.1 3 5.6 3 10.8 139
60–64 2 10.8 3 5.5 2 8.2 92
>65 2 5.4 2 1.4 2 3.2 92
All ages   33.5   9.9   21.6  

a: Excludes individual victim records with missing age and/or gender (n=63)

b: Rate of victimisation per 100,000 population (ABS 2009b), based on individual victims with valid age and gender. Excludes organisational victims and is therefore lower than the rate specified when also considering organisational victims (n=1,716)

Note: Percentages may not total 100 due to rounding. Males n=3,572; females n=1,066

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Young men have consistently been shown to be subject to high rates of armed robbery victimisation. Men aged 18 to 19 years experienced the highest rate of victimisation of all age and gender groupings (133.6 per 100,000 population; see Table 2). The highest victimisation rate among women and girls was also found in the 18 to 19 year age group (37.9 per 100,000), although the overall rate of female victimisation was substantially less (see Table 2). The most victimised age groups among both male and females reflects the overall patterns for many crimes with the 15–24 year old cohort being the most victimised (ABS 2010). Overall, males were three times more likely to be victimised than females (males=33.5 per 100,000 population, females=9.9). These figures are slightly lower than with the previous year’s data, with rates of victimisation for males decreasing while the rates for females remained relatively stable (males=39.2 per 100,000 population, females=11.5).

Consistent with 2007 findings, the largest percentages of victims in most age and gender groups were robbed on the street or footpath (see Table 3). Over half of all males under 18 years of age (53%) and of 18 to 34 years of age (56%) were victimised in this location.

Table 3 Locations of victimisation, by sex and age group, 2008 (%)a
Location Males Females Total (n)
<18 18–34 35–59 60+ <18 18–34 35–59 60+
Residential 3 8 16 25 8 11 16 15 482
Recreational 14 6 4 6 8 5 3 4 301
Transport-related 13 10 7 7 13 13 8 6 459
Open spaces (excluding street and footpath) 4 1 <1 0 3 1 1 0 61
Street and footpath 53 56 36 23 44 45 20 19 2,154
Educational, health, religious, justice and other community 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 0 54
Administrative and professional 0 <1 <1 0 0 <1 2 2 22
Wholesalers, warehouses, manufacturing and agricultural 0 <1 <1 0 0 0 <1 0 7
Retail 5 5 13 12 9 9 16 26 370
Banking and financial 0 <1 1 0 1 1 2 2 31
Pharmacies and chemists 0 <1 1 2 1 2 1 2 31
Service stations <1 3 3 5 0 2 2 6 117
Licensed premises <1 2 4 3 1 5 4 4 129
Newsagents and post offices <1 <1 2 2 0 <1 2 6 37
Corner stores, supermarkets and takeaways 3 4 7 10 7 6 14 9 255
Unspecified and other 3 2 3 3 5 1 4 0 113
Total (n) 621 2,004 802 130 115 554 344 53 4,623

a: Excludes individual victim records with age, gender, or location missing (n=78)

Note: Percentages may not total 100 due to rounding

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

General patterns in victimisation locations are similar to those seen in previous years, with elderly males (60 years and over age group) more likely to be a victim of armed robbery in a residential setting than any other location. By contrast, elderly females were more likely to be victims in a retail setting than any other location. Fluctuations since 2003 in the proportion of victims subjected to armed robbery in most other locations, and in older age groups, are likely to result from the small number of victims in these subcategories.

The weapons used in armed robberies are based (where indicated) on the most serious weapon listed in a weapon combination, with the order of decreasing seriousness being firearm, knife, syringe, then ‘other’ weapons. The most serious weapons used against male and female victims of different ages are summarised in Table 4. Knives were used against at least half of victims regardless of age or gender, although some age and gender differences can be found in patterns of weapon use. For example, it has been consistently found that a slightly higher percentage of females compared with males were subject to robbery with a syringe or firearm. This pattern continued in 2008, with females more likely to experience firearm robbery (12% for females compared with 10% for males) and robberies where a syringe was used (4% for females compared with 2% for males). As has been noted in earlier reports, the greater likelihood of females being victims of firearm robbery may be a reflection of employment, where women are more likely to work in locations where a higher risk of firearm robbery exists, such as a retail location. The ‘other’ weapon category accounted for 31 percent of weapon usage in robberies against males compared with 25 percent for females.

Table 4 Weaponsa used in armed robberies by gender and victim age group, 2008 (%)b
Age group (yrs) Males Females
Firearm Knife Syringe Other weapon Total (n) Firearm Knife Syringe Other weapon Total (n)
<15 5 63 2 31 129 0 79 4 18 28
15–17 6 55 1 39 452 5 71 0 24 78
18–19 7 63 1 29 371 15 56 0 29 105
20–24 10 58 2 30 766 17 53 6 24 207
25–29 9 58 2 30 450 15 52 5 29 126
30–34 11 59 3 28 256 10 55 8 27 77
35–39 15 55 3 27 210 8 66 3 22 86
40–44 13 54 4 29 158 16 53 2 29 62
45–49 13 59 3 26 155 14 58 4 24 72
50–54 15 48 4 33 114 11 61 2 26 62
55–59 17 52 1 30 99 0 66 6 29 35
60–64 18 56 4 23 57 14 68 7 11 28
>65 15 50 3 32 62 6 82 0 12 17
Total (%) 10 57 2 31 100 12 59 4 25 100

a: Based on most serious weapon listed in a weapon combination, assuming order of decreasing seriousness of firearm, knife, syringe, ‘other‘ weapon

b: Excludes individual victim records with weapon type unspecified, unknown, not applicable and those in which victim age or sex is not stated or gender is missing

Note: Percentages may not total 100 due to rounding. n=4,262

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Only a minority of jurisdictions were able to supply information regarding victim injury as a result of armed robbery, which equated to injury data for approximately one in seven victims (n=722). Due to the small number of cases examined, results should not be interpreted as representative of all armed robbery victims in Australia. Some findings in 2008 are similar to those of 2007 insofar as only a small proportion of supplied victim cases recorded serious injury (5%; see Table 5). Eleven percent of all victims had no report of injury. One-third of victims received a minor injury (33%). Of the major weapon types, other weapon robberies resulted in the highest percentage of reported minor injuries (52%). Fifty-one percent of all victims reported emotional trauma as the listed injury. There were no deaths recorded in this NARMP sample for 2008.

Table 5 Injury from weapon inflicted on individual victims, by weapon typea, 2008 (%)b
Injury Weapon All weapons
Firearm Knife Syringe Other weapon
No injury 20 8 14 15 11
Minor injury 18 25 21 52 33
Serious injuryc 2 6 0 5 5
Emotional trauma 61 60 64 28 51
Total (n) 56 432 14 220 722

a: Based on most serious weapon listed in a weapon combination, assuming order of seriousness of firearm, knife, syringe and ‘other’ weapon

b: Excludes individual victim records with missing injury information and/or unspecified weapon type, or weapon types of unknown, not applicable or not stated

c: Serious injury refers to that requiring immediate emergency medical treatment

Note: Percentages may not total 100 due to rounding

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Organisational victims of armed robbery

Organisations comprised approximately one-quarter (27%) of all victims recorded in the NARMP for 2008, essentially the same proportion as for 2007 (26% of all victims). As was the case for individual victimisations, the majority of armed robberies of organisations involved a knife (54% organisations, 58% individuals), although a substantially higher percentage were subject to firearm robbery (23% organisations cf 11% for individuals). Only a small percentage of organisations were robbed with other weapons (18%), compared with 29 percent of individual victims.

Weapons used during armed robberies, and the types of locations where victimisation occurred in 2008 (see Table 6), were generally similar to those of 2007. However, there was a substantial increase in the number of residential armed robberies (n=76 in 2007) with increases seen in every weapon type for this location. Continuing on from 2007, service stations once again saw a marked decrease in the number of weapons used during robberies in 2008, with 100 fewer organisational victims reported. There were also decreases in every weapon type for service stations in 2008 compared with 2007 data.

Table 6 Organisational victims of armed robbery, by weapon typea and location, 2008 (%)b
Location Weapon Total (n)
Firearm Knife Syringe Other weapon
Residential 6 10 6 11 142
Recreational 0 <1 0 0 3
Transport-related 1 <1 0 1 11
Open spaces (excluding street and footpath) 0 <1 0 0 1
Street and footpath 3 3 3 3 52
Educational, health, religious, justice and other community 0 <1 0 0 3
Administrative and professional 1 <1 0 0 5
Wholesalers, warehouses, manufacturing and agricultural 0 <1 1 0 5
Retail 30 38 53 34 575
Banking and financial 7 1 0 2 41
Pharmacies and chemists 3 7 11 4 88
Service stations 10 13 7 14 193
Licensed premises 27 10 4 20 250
Newsagents and post offices 3 2 1 3 38
Corner stores, supermarkets and takeaways 8 13 10 5 163
Unspecified and other 2 1 3 2 23
Total (n) 374 856 70 293 1,593

a: Based on most serious weapon listed in derived weapon combination, assuming order of seriousness of firearm, knife, syringe and ‘other’ weapon

b: Excludes individual victim records with missing injury information and/or unspecified weapon type, or weapon types of unknown, not applicable or not stated

Note: Percentages may not total 100 because of rounding

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Offenders

The NARMP contains information about both alleged (charged and awaiting trial) and convicted offenders linked to armed robberies reported in the reference period—with the capacity to capture information on up to five offenders per robbery in some jurisdictions. In cases where more than five offenders were involved, information about the sixth and subsequent offenders was not collated. The NARMP dataset does not contain demographic information about individuals suspected of robbery, or report offender descriptions where individuals had not been apprehended by the time data were extracted. Finally, there is redundancy in victim-based offender information because armed robberies involving multiple victims have duplicated offender data for each involved victim. Because of these dataset features, the following describes only a subset of all offenders involved in reported armed robberies in Australia in 2008 and some information is repeated in that subset.

In 2008, 61 percent of victim records did not contain associated offender data (for further details see Technical Appendix). Of the 2,473 victims with offender information supplied, demographic details were available for 3,975 offenders. Table 7 shows that almost half of all organisational victims had at least one offender identified, compared with one-third (36%) of individuals who were robbed. On average, individuals were victimised by slightly larger groups of offenders (1.7 offenders) than organisations experienced (1.4 offenders). Previous NARMP reports show similar findings, but as noted in those reports, these apparent differences may be a function of limitations in available offender data.

Table 7 Number of offenders involved in armed robbery, by victim type, 2008 (%)
Offender count Victim type Total (n)
Individuals Organisations
Nil/unsolveda 64 54 3,935
One 21 32 1,551
Two 9 9 566
Three 3 3 188
Four 2 1 112
Five or moreb 1 1 68
Total (n) 4,709 1,711 6,420

a: Includes individual and organisational victim records that were unsolved or had an outcome of no offender proceeded against and those in which offender information could not be supplied or was missing

b: Data set contains a maximum of 5 offenders, therefore victimisations involving more than 5 offenders are included in the count of 5

Note: Percentages may not total 100 due to rounding

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Where data on the relationship between victim and offender was available, offenders were unknown to individual victims in approximately 91 percent of cases (see Table 8). This tends to suggest, as has every previous NARMP report, that robbery tends to be an anonymous crime. These results were identical to the previous year’s results.

Table 8 Relationship between individual victim and offendera, 2008
Relationship n Victim–offender relationships(%)
Offender(s) known to victim 164 9
Offender(s) unknown to victim 1,632 91
Total 1,796 100

a: Multiple relationships were listed for some victim records in which multiple offenders were identified. Therefore, n refers to the total number of relationships listed, not the number of individual victim records. Excludes victim records with relationship codes of ‘missing’, ‘not applicable’, or ‘variable not supplied’ and records flagged as organisational victims

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Approximately one-third of victim records (32%) were noted as not being finalised at the time of data extraction, regardless of the victim type (see Table 9); in a further one-third of cases, the matter was finalised with an offender being proceeded against (33%). This figure was much higher for organisational victims (41%). The summary statistics should be considered with the caveat that the investigative status variable is problematic for a range of reasons. These findings (which can refer to outcome at data extraction or at 180 days) should not be compared with earlier NARMP annual reports (see Technical Appendix), nor with RCV information, which only reports on case status 30 days following a crime report being received.

Repeat victimisation

A small number of victims (identified via victim reference numbers) appeared in the 2008 dataset on multiple occasions. Although not a completely valid indicator of repeat victimisation (see the discussion of data limitations in the Technical Appendix), there were 76 victim records where details strongly suggest repeat victimisation during 2008. Twelve of these victims (individuals and organisations) were subject to armed robbery on at least three occasions, while it appeared that two victims were targeted on at least four occasions. There was an average of 92 days between the dates on which the first and second armed robberies occurred for repeat victims, although 340 days elapsed for one victim. Knives were the most serious weapon used against 47 percent of repeat victims, with firearms present in 30 percent of cases. For 55 percent of repeat victims, the same type of weapon was used in the first and second reported robberies. The majority of repeat victims were organisations (n=47; 62%): 13 were licensed premises and 12 were service stations.

Armed robbery incidents

A total of 5,686 unique armed robbery incidents were identified and created from the victim file. The 2008 data yielded fewer numbers of armed robbery incidents than recorded in 2007, however, many of the findings still remained relatively stable. For example, Table 10 shows that 63 percent of armed robberies involved a single individual victim and 27 percent a single organisation (2007 figures were 63% and 27% respectively).

Table 10 Victims involved in armed robbery incidents, by victim type, 2008
Victim type n Incidents(%)a
One individual 3,555 63
One organisation 1,542 27
Multiple individuals 406 7
Multiple organisations 8 <1
One organisation and one individual 126 2
One organisation and multiple individuals 23 <1
One individual and multiple organisations 1 <1
Total 5,661  

a: Excludes incident records with missing victim type

Note: Percentages may not total 100 due to rounding

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Locations where armed robberies occurred

Because the vast majority of armed robbery incidents involved only single victims (90%), the findings reported here are consistent with those observed in other victim-based analyses. Thirty-five percent of all armed robberies took place in the street and 16 percent occurred at the premises of unspecified retailers. Similar percentages were found in the 2007 annual report (33% and 16% respectively). Robberies involving individuals were more likely to take place in open public spaces, whereas most organisational victimisations (whether robbed in conjunction with individual victims or not) occurred in commercial settings (see Table 11). Unspecified retail locations were the most common site of incidents involving both an organisation and individual victims (33%).

Table 11 Locations of armed robberies, by victim type, 2008 (%)a
Location Victim typeb Total (n)
Single individual Single organisation >1 individual >1 organisation 1 organisation & 1 individual 1 organisation & > 1 individual
Residential 11 9 10 25 6 4 577
Recreational 6 <1 9 0 0 4 265
Transport-related 11 1 8 0 2 0 433
Open spaces (excluding street and footpath) 1 <1 1 0 0 0 53
Street and footpath 48 3 49 0 7 0 1,965
Educational, health, religious, justice and other community 1 < 1 1 0 0 4 43
Administrative and professional <1 <1 <1 0 1 0 24
Wholesalers, warehouses, manufacturing and agricultural <1 <1 <1 0 0 0 11
Retail 8 36 5 25 33 26 900
Banking and financial 1 3 <1 0 1 4 75
Pharmacies and chemists 1 6 1 0 3 0 119
Service stations 2 12 1 13 11 9 300
Licensed premises 2 15 4 25 13 13 329
Newsagents and post offices 1 2 1 13 4 0 64
Corner stores, supermarkets and takeaways 4 10 7 0 17 26 374
Unspecified and other 2 1 1 0 0 9 118

a: Excludes incident records with victim type or location missing

b: Excludes 1 case at the location of service stations where victim type was 1 individual and multiple organisations

Note: Percentages may not total 100 due to rounding. n=5,650

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Temporal aspects of armed robbery

In 2008, two-thirds (67%) of armed robberies took place in the hours between 6 pm and 6 am, with four out of 10 armed robberies (43%) occurring between 6 pm and midnight. Findings are generally consistent with NARMP data from previous years, for example, 65 percent of 2005 and 2006 NARMP incidents and 67 percent of 2007 incidents occurred between 6 pm and 6 am.

In Table 12, a summary is presented of incident time and location and shows that some settings were disproportionately subject to armed robberies at certain times. Over all locations, only 28 percent of armed robberies occurred during business hours (9 am to 6 pm). Locations that keep standard business hours experienced the majority of armed robberies during those hours (eg 71% banking and financial settings, 67% pharmacies and chemists, 67% administrative and professional offices). By contrast, 86 percent of service station and 73 percent of licensed premises robberies took place between 6 pm and 6 am. Newsagencies and post offices were targeted more frequently than any other location in the early morning hours (3 am to 9 am), with 38 percent of armed robberies at these locations occurring during these hours. These patterns are similar to those seen in previous years.

Table 12 Time of day robberies occurred, by location, 2008 (%)a
Location Time category
Midnight to 2.59 am 3.00 am to 5.59 am 6.00 am to 8.59 am 9.00 am to 11.59 am Noon to 2.59 pm 3.00 pm to 5.59 pm 6.00 pm to 8.59 pm 9.00 pm to 11.59 pm
Residential 14 13 4 6 7 10 21 24
Recreational 17 6 2 5 11 15 17 26
Transport-related 15 5 6 6 10 16 18 25
Open spaces (excluding street and footpath) 13 4 0 8 11 21 17 26
Street and footpath 23 10 4 5 6 8 16 28
Educational, health, religious, justice and other community 14 10 6 6 12 8 22 24
Administrative and professional 4 0 8 8 29 29 17 4
Wholesalers, warehouses, manufacturing and agricultural 9 9 18 9 27 27 0 0
Retail 7 4 3 10 15 18 26 16
Banking and financial 4 1 8 25 19 27 8 8
Pharmacies and chemists 1 0 3 18 16 33 24 5
Service stations 28 16 4 3 2 6 16 27
Licensed premises 16 5 2 9 9 8 20 32
Newsagents and post offices 5 22 16 3 22 25 8 0
Corner stores, supermarkets and takeaways 11 7 7 7 9 9 27 22
Unspecified and other 14 8 4 11 7 16 21 20
Total (n) 927 473 247 394 507 695 1,087 1,340

a: Excludes incident records with location missing

Note: Percentages may not total 100 due to rounding

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]; n=5,670

There was little difference between armed robberies reported on the weekend (Friday 14%, Saturday 16% and Sunday 16%) than other days of the week (Monday 14%, Tuesday 13%, Wednesday 13% and Thursday 14%). However, date and time data in combination shows that armed robberies were more frequent on certain days and times during the week (see Table 13 and Figure 3). For example, one-third of all robberies occurred between the hours of 6 pm and 6 am on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. Mention needs to be made regarding the interpretation of these figures; while 1 am on Sunday is technically recorded as Sunday, some people may still consider this to be a Saturday night robbery.

Table 13 Time armed robberies occurred, by day of the week, 2008 (%)
Time category Day of the week
Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
12.00 am to 2.59 am 23 12 12 14 14 16 21
3.00 am to 5.59 am 13 7 7 6 9 7 9
6.00 am to 8.59 am 4 4 4 4 5 4 5
9.00 am to 11.59 am 6 9 7 6 8 9 6
12.00 pm to 2.59 pm 7 11 10 12 11 8 6
3.00 pm to 5.59 pm 10 14 15 13 11 14 10
6.00 pm to 8.59 pm 18 21 20 20 20 18 18
9.00 pm to 11.59 pm 21 23 25 25 23 24 24
Total (n) 924 812 741 711 772 784 937

Note: Percentages may not total 100 due to rounding. n=5,681

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Figure 3 Time armed robberies occurred, by day of the week, 2008 (%)a

Time armed robberies occurred, by day of the week, 2008

a: Excludes individual and organisational victim records with missing location and/or organisational flag

Note: n=5,681

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Weapons used in armed robbery

Given the high proportion of single-victim incidents, patterns of weapon use that emerged from the incident-based analysis (see Table 14) closely mirror those found using victim-based data. A majority of incidents involved a knife (52%); only three percent of incidents involved a syringe, while 13 percent involved a firearm and 24 percent involved other weapons. In 2008, as seen in previous years, most firearm robberies involved threats with a single firearm (12% of all incidents; 12% in 2007 and 2006; 10% in 2005; 13% in 2004). In most knife robberies, a single knife was used (51% of incidents in 2008; 45% in 2007; 51% in 2006; 53% in 2005; 52% in 2004). The most commonly reported combination of weapons used in a single incident was that of knife and ‘other’ weapon (in 60 incidents). However, the NARMP does not always collate information on all of the weapons used in an armed robbery; therefore, this finding is not necessarily descriptive of all armed robberies.

Table 14 Weapon combinationsa used in armed robberies, by victim type, 2008 (%)
Weapon combinations Victim typeb Total
Single individual Single organisation >1 individual >1 organisation 1 organisation & 1 individual 1 organisation & >1 individual Number %
Firearms
Single firearm 8 21 11 38 17 26 671 12
Multiple firearms 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 <1
Firearm, knife 1 1 0 0 0 0 32 1
Firearm, other weapon 1 1 0 0 0 0 26 <1
Firearm, knife & other weapon 0 <1 <1 0 0 0 1 0
Total firearm combinations (n) 317 340 44 3 21 6 731 13
Knives
Single knife 52 49 50 63 56 26 2,886 51
Multiple knives 1 0 0 0 0 0 20 <1
Knife, syringe <1 0 <1 0 0 0 2 <1
Knife, other weapon 1 1 3 0 0 0 60 1
Knife, other weapon, unspecified weapon <1 0 0 0 0 0 3 <1
Total knife combinations (n) 1,904 769 217 5 70 6 2,971 52
Syringes
Single syringe 3 4 1 0 2 4 164 3
Total syringe combinations (n) 90 66 4 0 3 1 164 3
Other weapons
Single other weapon 27 17 26 0 19 39 1,353 24
Multiple other weapons <1 <1 0 0 0 0 14 <1
Total other weapon combinations (n) 969 258 106 0 24 9 1,366 24
Missing/not further defined
Single weapon nfd <1 0 0 0 0 0 2 <1
No specific weapon types/missing 8 7 9 0 6 4 426 8
Total no further details/unspecified/missing (n) 275 109 35 0 8 1 428 8
Total (n) 3,555 1,542 406 8 126 23 5,660 100

a: Weapon combinations derived from up to 3 listed weapon types. Excludes incident records with victim type missing

b: Excludes 1 case where a single ‘other’ weapon was used and the victim type was 1 individual and multiple organisations

Note: Percentages may not total 100 due to rounding

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Table 15 shows the most serious weapon used in armed robberies in different locations. As was the case in previous years, firearms were used in a high percentage of robberies in banking and financial settings (45% in 2008; 49% in 2007; 47% in 2006; 41% in 2005; 44% in 2004) and in licensed premises (39% in 2008; 44% in 2007; 38% in 2006; 35% in 2005; 44% in 2004), relative to other locations. The percentage of pharmacy robberies involving syringes has fluctuated over the years, reaching as high as 13 percent in 2005 and as low as zero incidents in 2006. In 2007, the use of syringes in pharmacy robberies was again high (7%) and in 2008, this figure continued to increase (8%). Knives were the most common weapons used in the majority of locations (eg corner stores, supermarkets and takeaways 62%; post offices and newsagents 58%; open spaces 58%).

Table 15 Most serious weapona used, by location, 2008 (%)b
Location Weapon Total (n)
Firearm Knife Syringe Other weapon Non-specific or missing
Residential 13 48 1 30 8 580
Recreational 6 50 3 34 7 265
Transport-related 8 57 3 24 8 434
Open spaces (excluding street and footpath) 2 58 0 34 6 53
Street and footpath 7 55 2 28 7 1,970
Educational, health, religious, justice and other community 4 57 0 27 12 51
Administrative and professional 25 67 0 4 4 24
Wholesalers, warehouses, manufacturing and agricultural 9 55 9 9 18 11
Retail 16 53 5 18 7 901
Banking and financial 45 27 1 16 11 75
Pharmacies and chemists 13 60 8 13 6 119
Service stations 16 52 4 18 10 302
Licensed premises 39 31 1 23 6 329
Newsagents and post offices 20 58 2 17 3 64
Corner stores, supermarkets and takeaways 13 62 3 10 12 374
Unspecified and other 14 42 4 35 5 123
All locations 13 52 3 24 8 5,675

a: Based on most serious weapon listed in derived weapon combination, assuming order of decreasing seriousness of firearm, knife, syringe, ‘other’ weapon

b: Excludes incident records with missing location

Note: Percentages may not total 100 due to rounding. n=5,675

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Property taken in armed robbery incidents

Some jurisdictions were able to supply information on up to five types of property stolen in an incident (n=2,424). As there are issues around the reliability and representativeness of property data, the results should be interpreted with caution. Most incidents (n=1,149; 47%) involved the theft of only a single item, although on average, two items of property were stolen in incidents with property information supplied.

The most commonly reported stolen property item was cash (in 1,356 incidents), reported in approximately six out of every 10 incidents where property information was available. The item listed as being stolen least frequently was weapons (n=14 incidents). Electrical equipment, including mobile phones, was listed 398 times (16%). There were 457 armed robberies (19%) in the current dataset in which both electrical equipment and cash were stolen. Fifty-two percent of these occurred on the street or footpath, while 14 percent occurred in residential locations.

Some jurisdictions were able to supply up to five types of stolen property that could be listed for each incident record. However, given the many possible different property combinations that could arise from this, information has been collapsed into a set of hierarchical property combinations (see Table 16). The categories are hierarchical, insofar as the first category, cash, refers to all possible property combinations in which cash was listed. The second, negotiable documents (which includes credit cards and ATM cards), refers to all possible combinations including this property type, but excluding cash. The third, refers to all combinations with identity documents but excluding cash and negotiable documents, and so on.

In Table 16, it can be seen that cash was stolen in 43 percent of robberies where only one type of property was taken. If more than one type of property was taken, it was likely that one of those property items would be cash (eg cash was taken in 85% of incidents with five property types stolen).

Table 16 Items taken in armed robbery incidents, 2008a (%)b
Property type Count of items stolenc All armed robberies
1 2 3 4 5
Cash 43 60 66 83 85 56
Negotiable documents 1 5 11 9 9 5
Identity documents 2 4 5 2 2 3
Luggage 2 14 10 4 4 6
Electrical equipment 28 9 6 2 0 16
Jewellery 2 1 <1 0 0 1
Alcohol and other drugs 4 2 2 0 0 3
Weapons 0 2 0 0 0 1
Personal items not classified elsewhere 12 3 <1 0 0 7
Conveyances and accessories 2 1 0 0 0 1
Other property not classified elsewhere 4 0 0 0 0 2
Total (n)d 1,149 562 392 266 55 2,424

a: Derived from first listed victim of incident, because property information is usually not linked to individual victims but to the incident itself. Electrical equipment includes mobile phones and accessories

b: Percentages may not total 100 due to rounding

c: Property count describes the number of different types of property listed in an incident record, excluding duplicated property types

d: Total number includes incident records annotated as No property stolen but excludes incident records with property information missing or not supplied

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

The locations in which robberies occurred impacted on the percentage of incidents where cash was stolen. For example, less than half of the armed robberies that occurred in recreational locations (43%), open spaces (37%), residential locations (47%) and the street (49%) involved the theft of cash. Slightly more than half of armed robberies that occurred in transport locations (52%) had cash stolen. By contrast, cash was stolen in over 75 percent of high-cash transaction businesses such as service stations, licensed premises, financial settings and corner stores (see Table 17). The 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2007 annual reports noted similar findings; previous reports have noted that the theft of alcohol and other drugs during robberies was highest when pharmacies were targeted. These findings were replicated in 2008 (20%).

Table 17 Highest-ranking property takena during armed robbery by location, 2008 (%)
Location Property type Total (n)
Cash Negotiable documents Identity documents Luggage Electrical equipment Jewellery Alcohol and other drugs Weapons Personal items Conveyances Other
Residential 47 4 2 6 16 2 2 1 15 3 2 262
Recreational 43 4 3 8 23 1 1 2 11 2 3 140
Transport-related 52 6 2 10 19 1 3 < 1 5 <1 1 221
Open spaces (excluding street and footpath) 37 7 7 10 17 0 0 0 13 10 0 30
Street and footpath 49 7 4 9 23 <1 1 1 5 1 2 979
Educational, health, religious, justice and other community 47 0 11 0 26 0 5 0 11 0 0 19
Administrative and professional 50 25 0 0 0 25 0 0 0 0 0 4
Wholesalers, warehouses, manufacturing and agricultural 25 25 0 0 25 0 0 0 25 0 0 4
Retail 69 2 1 1 8 1 4 0 10 1 4 282
Banking and financial 93 7 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 15
Pharmacies and chemists 67 2 0 0 0 0 20 0 10 0 0 49
Service stations 81 2 0 0 5 0 6 1 2 2 2 124
Licensed premises 78 1 0 3 3 1 11 0 3 0 1 117
Newsagents and post offices 69 0 4 0 12 0 8 0 0 4 4 26
Corner stores, supermarkets and takeaways 82 4 1 1 3 0 7 0 0 0 2 101
Unspecified and other 42 2 6 10 24 6 4 0 6 0 0 50
Total (n)b 1,356 114 67 149 397 24 72 14 158 28 44 2,423

a: Derived from first listed victim of incident because in the majority of victim records, property information is linked not to individual victims, but to the incident itself. Property types are hierarchical; the first category captures all property combinations, the second captures all combinations except cash and so on. Electrical equipment includes mobile phones and accessories

b: Total number excludes incident records annotated as No property stolen and incident records with property and/or location missing or not supplied

Note: Percentages may not total 100 due to rounding

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

For a subset of incidents (n=1,473), information was included on the value of stolen items. This variable should be treated as no more than indicative of the nature of the financial loss associated with armed robbery. In Australian jurisdictions, property value is not usually a mandatory reporting field and if it is recorded at all, it is often only an estimate. Typically, it is not validated at a later date.

Based on the available data, regardless of the weapon used and whether a location was indicated, armed robbery offenders netted an average of $1,656, although total values were skewed towards the lower end of the range.

  • The median value was $275.
  • Eleven percent of incidents had a total recorded value of nil.
  • Thirty-two percent of incidents had a recorded total value of less than $100.
  • Sixty-four percent of incidents had a recorded total value of less than $500.

The highest average gains for offenders (where a location was identified) were from incidents where the most serious weapon used was a firearm ($4,833; see Table 18). Similar to most previous reports, the lowest average in 2008 was associated with syringe robberies ($830). Robberies with knives, however, netted only slightly better gains with an average of $983, while robberies committed with ‘other’ weapons netted a higher average of $1,451. Other findings included that:

  • the highest average value gains (calculated from weapon–location categories containing more than 5 incident records) were ‘other’ weapon robberies from pharmacies ($28,038; see Table 18). However, this figure was skewed by one incident where it was reported that $195,200 was taken [not displayed in Table 18]; and
  • in 2008, there were a number of large-gain armed robberies that skewed average results at different locations, including administrative locations ($47,580), licensed premises ($125,599) and banking and financial locations ($37,549 and $45,000).
    Table 18 Average total value of property stolen during armed robbery, by weapon type and location type, 2008a, b ($)
    Location Weapon used All weapon types
    Firearm Knife Syringe Other weapon
    Residential 1,193 2,449 1,505 1,865
    (number of incidents) (25) (75) (0) (75) (175)
    Recreational 813 767 191 657 696
    (number of incidents) (7) (36) (4) (35) (82)
    Transport-related 4,921 966 1,352 1,283 1,351
    (number of incidents) (10) (85) (7) (44) (146)
    Open spaces (excluding street and footpath) 327 515 430
    (number of incidents) (0) (5) (0) (6) (11)
    Street and footpath 3,569 719 1,282 894 1,027
    (number of incidents) (42) (272) (12) (195) (521)
    Educational, health, religious, justice and other community 0 216 307 233
    (number of incidents) (1) (8) (0) (5) (14)
    Administrative and professional 47,580 1,750 24,665
    (number of incidents) (1) (1) (0) (0) (2)
    Wholesalers, warehouses, manufacturing and agricultural 3,437 3,437
    (number of incidents) (0) (3) (0) (0) (3)
    Retail 2,231 735 253 941 1,103
    (number of incidents) (55) (128) (7) (55) (245)
    Banking and financial 10,132 1,112 202 6,884
    (number of incidents) (13) (5) (0) (2) (20)
    Pharmacies and chemists 897 739 736 28,038 5,933
    (number of incidents) (7) (20) (3) (7) (37)
    Service stations 968 538 379 867 665
    (number of incidents) (9) (50) (3) (22) (84)
    Licensed premises 18,777 2,120 500 1,948 7,059
    (number of incidents) (22) (25) (1) (25) (73)
    Newsagents and post offices 1,824 2,144 670 1,739
    (number of incidents) (6) (4) (0) (2) (12)
    Corner stores, supermarkets and takeaways 1,091 300 898 1,044
    (number of incidents) (0) (22) (1) (2) (25)
    Unspecified and other 166 281 1,320 803
    (number of incidents) (4) (7) (0) (12) (23)
    All locations 4,833 983 830 1,451 1,662
    (Total number of incidents) (202) (746) (38) (487) (1,473)

    a: Based on most serious weapon listed in a weapon combination, assuming order of decreasing seriousness of firearm, knife, syringe, ‘other’ weapon. Excludes incidents from which total property value or location was missing or not supplied or weapon was missing or unspecified

    b: Key findings have been emphasised in bold

    Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Armed robbery offenders

Offender data were available for 2,157 incidents, although as noted in the Technical Appendix, NARMP offender data are only broadly representative of all armed robbery offenders. Due to the possibility of multiple offenders being associated with a single incident, some or all variables had been supplied for a total of 3,425 offenders. The average incident for which offender information was available involved 1.6 offenders.

In the preceding examination of the offenders linked to each victim, an offender was counted once for every victim involved in that armed robbery. Therefore, if two victims were robbed, the offender was counted twice. In the following section, armed robbery offenders are assessed by incident, not number of victims. An incident-based analysis can provide a more accurate description of this crime because features of the offenders are counted only once per incident, regardless of the number of victims involved. In the current dataset, 246 incidents which contained valid offender information (11% of all incidents) also involved multiple victims.

In Table 19, a summary is presented of the type of victims involved in incidents, cross-tabulated with the number of offenders associated with that incident. Almost two-thirds of incidents where offender information was available (7 cases did not have victim type information available) involved only a single offender (64%), although this varied with victim types. For instance, lone offenders were involved in 52 percent of incidents where multiple people were victims and 71 percent of incidents where a single organisation was the victim.

Table 19 Proportion of armed robberies involving specified numbers of offendersa by victim type, 2008 (%)
Victim typeb Number of offenders Total (n)
1 2 3 4 5
One individual 61 23 9 4 3 1,192
One organisation 71 19 6 2 2 712
Multiple individuals 52 26 7 10 5 183
Multiple organisations 86 0 14 0 0 7
One organisation and one individual 67 20 9 2 2 46
One organisation and multiple individuals 56 44 0 0 0 9
All 64 22 8 4 3 2,149

a: Based on offender information from first listed victim in incident. Excludes incident records in which offender information was not supplied

b: Excludes 1 case where offender count was ‘1’ and the victim type was 1 individual and multiple organisations

Note: Percentages may not total 100 due to rounding

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Lone offenders might target certain types of organisations rather than individuals because the individuals representing that organisation may be less likely to resist for a range of reasons (eg retail staff may be advised to comply with offenders and/or they may be alone at the location in question). An examination of the 504 locations where lone offenders robbed single organisations shows that 39 percent were unspecified retailers and 11 percent were service stations. Further, even though these robberies predominantly occurred in retail locations, which could be assumed to operate during conventional business hours, 59 percent of armed robberies of lone organisations occurred after 6 pm but before 9 am; times when fewer staff and customers would be expected in most retail settings.

As with data from previous years, 2008 data suggest multiple individual victims are more likely than other victim categories to be targeted by multiple offenders. Forty-eight percent of incidents with multiple individual victims involved more than one offender. This may be because the more offenders involved in a robbery, the greater control of the situation they are afforded. Multiple offender participation in a robbery may increase the element of intimidation and decrease the likelihood of victim resistance. Research from the United Kingdom into the methods and motivations of street robbers indicates that increased numbers also act as type of insurance policy where some offenders chose to operate in groups because the costs (having to split financial takings) are offset by the benefit of guaranteed back-up should victims resist (Deakin et al. 2007).

Armed robbers acting alone may believe they are less able to effectively intimidate victims, particularly multiple victims. Therefore, they may also be expected to arm themselves with highly threatening weapons, such as firearms, in order to increase their ability to intimidate. In earlier NARMP analyses, the use of knives was more common than the use of firearms regardless of offender numbers (Smith & Louis 2009); however, findings from 2008 NARMP data show that when five offenders were involved, firearms (33%) were slightly more common than knives (31%). This may represent incidents perpetrated by a small subset of more professional robbery gangs, although location data do not strongly support this—61 percent of five person gangs using firearms targeted victims on the street or footpath. It is also important to note that only a small number of cases had multiple weapon data provided because some jurisdictions who had previously supplied multiple weapon data were unable to provide this information in 2008. These patterns must therefore be treated with some caution as case numbers are much smaller than in previous reports.

Table 20 Most serious weapona used in armed robberies, by number of offenders, 2008b (%)
Weapon Number of offenders All incidents
1 2 3 4 5
Firearm 11 15 19 21 33 14
Knife 52 49 49 50 31 51
Syringe 5 1 1 0 0 4
Other weapon 22 24 26 23 30 23
Non specific or missing 9 10 5 6 6 9
Total (n) 1,379 476 168 80 54 2,157

a: Based on most serious weapon listed in derived weapon combination, assuming order of decreasing seriousness of firearm, knife, syringe, ‘other’ weapon

b: Based on offender information for first listed victim in incident. Excludes incident records in which offender information was not included

Note: Percentages may not total 100 due to rounding

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Offender demographics

Armed robbery research consistently shows that most offenders are young males (eg see Willis 2006). Data summarised in Table 21 shows that in 2008, approximately nine out of every 10 offenders was male (89%) and 94 percent of all offenders were under 40 years of age. More than half (56%) of all offenders were males aged 18 to 39 years. As with victims, this is the general pattern for offender age across most recorded offences, with 15–24 year old males being mostly culpable (ABS 2009c).

Co-offenders in armed robberies tend to be of similar ages. Of the 763 incidents involving multiple offenders, 63 percent comprised co-offenders who belonged to the same broad age–gender grouping. Given that most armed robbers are young men, it is not surprising that co-offenders involved in the largest number of incidents (n=208; 27%) were also males aged 18 to 34 years.

The types of weapons used by male and female offenders and co-offenders across age groups are summarised in Table 22. Results suggested there was little variation in patterns of weapon use as a function of the various age and gender groupings. The results from earlier NARMP annual reports have suggested a slight gender differentiation, although the categories in question contained only a very small number of cases, thus these patterns remain tenuous. Males were more likely than females to use firearms (14% cf 9%), while females were five times more likely than males to use syringes as a weapon (16% cf 3%). Male and female (mixed) offender groups under the age of 18 years (75%) used knives more frequently than all other groups.

The average age of offenders was 23 years, the same as that observed in 2006 and 2007. Average age did vary according to location of offence and numbers of offenders involved in the robbery; however, patterns of variation were similar to those observed in 2007. For example, lone offenders tended to be older on average than those who offended as part of a group. The average age of lone offenders was 26 years compared with 19 years for groups of five (these figures were 25 and 18 years in 2007). The average age of offenders varied with location, however, similar to previous years, older offenders tended to target banking and financial locations (30 years) and pharmacies (30 years). Younger offenders, however, tended to target more public space locations such as street and footpaths (20 years) or transport-related locations (20 years).

Case study: Armed robbery at transport-related locations

In the past, other armed robbery location targets have been monitored more closely as a result of the amount of money they turn over (eg banking and financial locations and licensed premises); the type of property unique to their industry (eg pharmacies often have alcohol and drugs stolen); the frequency of being targeted for armed robbery (eg service stations); or the invasion of a safe environment (eg residential armed robberies).

The 2008 NARMP dataset contains information on transport-related locations including bus stops and train stations, as well as car parks associated with these terminals and robberies occurring on the actual conveyances—that is, buses, trains and taxis. This type of robbery is of interest due to the challenges it can pose for people who use public transport and for those who work in this type of location (eg taxi drivers). There were a total of 434 armed robbery incidents at transport-related locations in 2008 (132 more than at service stations), which constituted eight percent of the total number of armed robbery incidents.

The most common type of transport location for armed robbery was the car park of a transport terminal (such as a train station car park; 41%). However, train stations were often recorded as an armed robbery location themselves, accounting for one in four transport location armed robberies (27%). Actual transport conveyances accounted for less than 20 percent of transport location armed robberies, with four percent occurring in taxis, seven percent occurring on trains and one percent on buses (another 4% occurred on ‘other’ conveyances not further defined).

There were some inconsistencies between weapons used in the different transport locations. Armed robberies in car parks were less likely to involve a knife compared with those at train stations (56% and 68% respectively). Yet, car park armed robberies were more likely to involve firearms than any other transport location and accounted for close to two-thirds of all transport-related armed robberies involving a firearm (65%).

With the exception of taxis, which were likely to be targeted during the early morning hours (75% between midnight and 6 am), the majority of armed robberies in most transport locations were experienced during the hours of 3 pm to midnight (eg 57% of bus stop robberies; 64% of those in train stations). This, in part, reflects patterns of commuter use—minimal bus and train services operate between midnight and 6 am, with taxis the only form of public transport available after midnight in some areas. In addition, these transport locations may not be as fully staffed, monitored, or utilised in the evening, making them more ‘attractive’ to potential offenders. Over half of all car park robberies (56%) occurred during this same period (3 pm to midnight), presumably because these are the times when drivers are most likely to return to their vehicles and may be vulnerable to attack—particularly after dark.

Lone offenders accounted for the majority of incidents (65%). Where multiple offenders were involved, incidents with two offenders accounted for 20 percent of transport location armed robberies, while incidents with three offenders accounted for nine percent. Armed robbery incidents at train stations involved two offenders in approximately one-quarter of cases (23%). Both male and female offenders were more likely to be involved in armed robberies at train stations (39% for males, 42% for females) or car parks (30% for males, 26% for females).

Half (50%) of all offenders involved in armed robberies at transport locations were under the age of 18 years. Some locations, such as bus stops and train stations, recorded approximately two-thirds (67% and 64% respectively) of identified offenders as being under the age of 18 years old. Although case numbers were small, taxis were one of the forms of transport most likely to involve an older armed robber, with 18 percent of offenders being 35 years and older.

In general, transport location offenders were typically young males, employing easy to obtain weapons such as knives, suggesting they may be likely to be amateur offenders. Offenders were no more likely to operate in groups when compared with armed robbers in locations unrelated to transport. Few transport-related armed robberies occurred on actual conveyances, with the majority taking place at the terminals or in car parks.

Table 26 Time robberies occurred, by transport location, 2008 (%)
Location Time category
Midnight to 2.59 am 3.00 am to 5.59 am 6.00 am to 8.59 am 9.00 am to 11.59 am Noon to 2.59 pm 3.00 pm to 5.59 pm 6.00 pm to 8.59 pm 9.00 pm to 11.59 pm
Car parks 17 4 5 6 12 14 19 22
Bus stops 9 9 17 3 6 9 14 34
Train station 15 3 4 7 7 20 19 26
Other terminals 13 3 0 10 16 19 16 23
Train 13 0 7 7 7 27 7 33
Bus 0 0 0 0 0 20 80 0
Taxi 44 31 0 6 0 6 0 13
Other conveyance 11 5 11 5 16 5 21 26
Other transport 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 100
Total 15 5 6 6 10 16 18 25

Note: Percentages may not total 100 due to rounding

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Table 27 Transport location armed robberies, by number of offendersa, 2008 (%)
Location Offenders (n) n
1 2 3 4 5
Car parks 75 18 7 0 0 61
Bus stops 54 15 23 8 0 13
Train station 52 23 11 11 4 56
Other terminals 80 10 0 10 0 10
Train 58 33 8 0 0 12
Bus 0 0 100 0 0 1
Taxi 100 0 0 0 0 6
Other conveyance 64 27 9 0 0 11
Other transport 50 50 0 0 0 2
All transport 65 20 9 5 1 172

a: Based on offender information from first listed victim in incident. Excludes incident records in which offender information was not supplied

Note: Percentages may not total 100 due to rounding

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Table 21 Armed robbery offendersa in each age group by sex, 2008 (%)
Age group (yrs) Sex Both sexes
Male Female
<15 6 10 7
15–17 26 26 26
18–19 16 8 15
20–24 19 13 18
25–29 14 22 15
30–34 9 11 9
35–39 5 5 5
40–44 4 3 4
45–49 1 2 1
50–54 <1 <1 <1
55–59 <1 0 <1
60–64 <1 0 <1
>65 <1 0 <1
Total (n) 3,033 380 3,413

a: Based on up to 5 listed offenders, for first listed victim in incident. Excludes offenders with age and/or gender missing or not supplied. Excludes incident records for which offender information was not included

Note: Percentages may not total 100 due to rounding

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Table 22 Most serious weapona used in incidents, by sex and age group, 2008b (%)
Sex and age (yrs) Weapon Offenders(n)
Firearm Knife Syringe Other weapon
All male offender groups
<18 6 57 1 37 372
18–34 16 59 4 21 922
35–49 19 52 9 20 190
>50 24 71 0 6 17
Multiple age categories 16 52 1 31 176
All males 14 57 3 25 1,677
All female offender groups
<18 6 46 6 43 35
18–34 11 49 19 21 70
35–49 0 55 36 9 11
>50 0 0 0 0 0
Multiple age categories 11 67 11 11 9
All females 9 50 16 26 125
Male & female (mixed) offender groups
<18 6 75 0 19 16
18–34 20 60 5 15 55
35–49 0 50 0 50 4
>50 0 0 0 0 0
Multiple age categories 35 34 0 31 68
All mixed gender offenders 25 49 2 24 143

a: Based on most serious weapon listed in derived weapon combination, assuming order of seriousness of firearm, knife, syringe and ‘other’ weapon. Excludes incident records missing or unspecified weapons

b: Based on up to 5 listed offenders, for first listed victim in incident. Records with information concerning only 1 offender are included in the relevant gender/age category. Excludes offenders with age and/or gender missing or not supplied. Excludes incident records for which offender information was not included

Note: n=1,945. Percentages may not total 100 due to rounding

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Table 23 Average offender agea by location type and number of offenders involved, 2008
Location Offenders (n) All
1 2 3 4 5 All (n)
Residential 27 26 27 20 20 25 313
Recreational 19 18 17 17 16 18 83
Transport-related 23 19 18 17 17 20 171
Open spaces (excluding street and footpath) 21 25 23 19 22 21 17
Street and footpath 23 20 18 18 18 20 531
Educational, health, religious, justice and other community 24 17 18 22 22 21
Administrative and professional 37 32 14 32 11
Wholesalers, warehouses, manufacturing and agricultural 24 30 26 7
Retail 27 24 21 21 18 25 404
Banking and financial 34 30 23 25 30 43
Pharmacies and chemists 31 30 26 30 81
Service stations 25 22 24 19 23 24 124
Licensed premises 27 29 25 21 26 27 132
Newsagents and post offices 31 25 21 27 22
Corner stores, supermarkets and takeaways 25 25 23 22 18 24 143
Unspecified and other 25 26 18 15 15 22 43
All locations 26 23 21 19 19 23 2,146

a: Average derived from information from first listed victim in incident, concerning up to 5 listed offenders. Excludes offenders with age missing. Excludes incident records in which offender information was not included or not supplied and/or location is missing

–=no records in subcategory

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [

Table 24 Armed robbery incidents at transport locations, 2008
Location n %
Car parks 178 41
Bus stops 35 8
Train station 117 27
Other terminals 31 7
Train 30 7
Bus 5 1
Taxi 16 4
Other conveyance 19 4
Other transport 3 1
Total 434 100

computer file]

Table 25 Transport location by weapon typea, 2008 (%)
Location Firearm Knife Syringe Other weapon Total (n)
Car parks 14 56 3 28 163
Bus stops 3 74 0 24 34
Train station 5 68 5 23 106
Other terminals 3 60 0 37 30
Train 8 65 4 23 26
Bus 20 60 0 20 5
Taxi 7 64 14 14 14
Other conveyance 5 58 11 26 19
Other transport 0 0 0 100 3
Total 9 62 4 26 400

a: Based on most serious weapon listed in derived weapon combination, assuming order of decreasing seriousness of firearm, knife, syringe, ‘other’ weapon

Note: Percentages may not total 100 due to rounding

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Table 28 Armed robbery incidents at transport locations, by gender of offendersa, 2008 (%)
Location Male Female Total
Car parks 30 26 30
Bus stops 8 13 9
Train station 39 42 39
Other terminals 6 0 5
Train 8 0 7
Bus 1 0 1
Taxi 2 5 2
Other conveyance 5 13 6
Other transport 1 0 1
Total (n) 233 38 271

a: Based on up to 5 listed offenders, for first listed victim in incident. Excludes offenders with age and/or gender missing or not supplied. Excludes incident records for which offender information was not included

Note: Percentages may not total 100 due to rounding

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]

Table 29 Armed robbery incidents at transport locations, by age of offendera, 2008 (%)
Location Offenders by age group n
>18 18–24 25–34 35+
Car parks 38 38 14 10 79
Bus stops 67 29 4 0 24
Train station 64 22 7 7 107
Other terminals 36 50 14 0 14
Train 28 56 17 0 18
Bus 100 0 0 0 3
Taxi 36 27 18 18 11
Other conveyance 25 33 33 8 12
Other transport 50 50 0 0 2
All transport 50 32 11 7 270

a: Based on up to 5 listed offenders, for first listed victim in incident. Excludes offenders with age and/or gender missing or not supplied. Excludes incident records for which offender information was not included

Note: Percentages may not total 100 due to rounding

Source: AIC NARMP 2008 [computer file]