Australian Institute of Criminology

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Understanding crime trends in Australia

Trends & issues in crime and criminal justice no. 28

John Walker and Monika Henderson
ISBN 0 642 15881 9 ISSN 0817-8542
Canberra: Australian Institute of Criminology, January 1991


This paper argues that rising crime figures are partly due to a short term trend in population growth and to changes in society which have increased the opportunity for crime. The authors discuss the types of offences committed by different age groups; increased opportunities for juvenile offending; and government, community and media reactions to reported crime statistics. They also claim that the myth of ever increasing crime may be being perpetuated by placing greater demands on police, courts and prisons at the expense of alternative strategies.