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Crime Situation in Bankstown-Australia

Bankstown- The City

Bankstown is a local government area that traces its beginnings back to the year 1797 when the then Governor Hunter decided to recognize the lofty character of the plant specialist and scientist Sir Joseph Banks. It is from this plant scientist that the town got its name. It is located in the Canterbury-Bankstown segment of the larger city of Sydney, and it did not assume the status of a city till Her Royal Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II’s presence in 1980.The neighboring areas include Parramatta city, Auburn Council, Fairfield city, Liverpool city, Strathfield and Hurstville.There is also Canterbury city as well as the Shire of Sutherland (Lawrence, et al.1999.p.111-116).

Bankstown has all the makings of a modern city. The life is fast and the politics engaging. The four wards that make up the region produce twelve councilors who are led by a mayor. This is the office that guides the various activities that take place in the city of Bankstown.As it has already been mentioned, Bankstown has all the characteristics of a modern city. This means that crime is part and parcel of the urban life of Bankstown.

Major forms of crime

Crime in Bankstown takes different forms. Malicious damage to property is just one of them. Other types of crime include rapes, robberies, assault and theft. Theft is manifested in different forms such as car theft, theft of motor bikes and bicycles, mobile phones as well the stealing of household items in cases of break ins that take place in people’s places of residence. Shops in the city’s Central Business District (CBD) also get broken into and items get stolen from them. The other type of crime that is also becoming part of the long list of crimes that take place in Bankstown is arson. This falls in the category of malicious damage to property. It is done by setting someone’s property on fire. Also, there is drug trafficking, prostitution and domestic violence that takes place within the urban homes.

Nothing Unique In the Bankstown Story……

Bankstown crime characteristics do not display anything that has not been witnessed in any city in the world. The crime world is dominated by males who are mainly youthful with a few middle aged men being part of the field too. The number of women who form part of the crime gangs is very small. These women are mostly middle aged. The area that is dominated by women is prostitution although the whole practice of prostitution is declining.

Malicious Damage to Property

Malicious damage to property whose legislation dates back to the 1800s and later amended in the 1960s and 1970s has a fairly wide interpretation (Heaton 2001, pp.3-7). This means that a number of misdemeanors are covered under the crime of malicious damage to property under the law. Such misdemeanors have a general character in that they lead to the impairment of the property that belongs to another person. In Bankstown, damage done to cars, houses and household items is common. It is also manifested in the impairment of small portable items such as cell phones.

The Different Schools of Thought: Who is right?

The different schools of thought in Bankstown are a display of the variety of thoughts that the residents have about their city. There are some who think that the malicious damage to property statistics are right when they show that it has been declining (Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research 2010, p.1). This is definitely good news for not just Bankstown but Australia as a whole. There are also those who think that malicious damage to property as a crime has not declined, but instead it has gone up (Pearlman 2006, p.1). But generally, the Bankstown average for nine years is lower than the average for all local government areas in North West Wales (myboot 2010, p.1).

There are also different causative explanations regarding crime in general and malicious damage to property in particular. Some are of the opinion that poverty drives people to commit crime. This is true to some extent. Malice as demonstrated by such attributes as envy and humiliation are part of the explanations for malicious damage to property. In some cases, property gets damaged by thieves as they try to access other items or as they escape. Stray bullets that are as a result of exchanges of fire between criminals and criminals and police also damage people’s property. The graph below shows the standings of malicious damage to property as a crime in Bankstown.

Graphical representation of Malicious Damage to Property in Bankstown over a 9 year period for Bankstown in light blue and for all Local Government Areas in light green
Figure 1. Graphical representation of Malicious Damage to Property in Bankstown over a 9 year period for Bankstown in light blue and for all Local Government Areas in light green

The Effort and Definition of Terms

Malicious damage to property has received wide attention alongside other crimes in Bankstown. The major point to note here is that the effort has not been singly dedicated to malicious damage to property but instead has been wholesome in its address to crime.

The effort taken has the following forms

Cybersmart families

This is a term the people of Bankstown use to describe the expected character of the Bankstown families as far as usage of the internet is concerned. The aim of the initiative is to ensure that anyone within Bankstown who makes use of the internet understands the significance of safeguarding their passwords since this can get into the hands of malicious individuals who can then commit a wide range of crimes including damaging property that is associated with the persons whose passwords they have accessed (Bankstown City Council 2010, p.1).

Community Safety Brochures

These are leaflets that are produced by the city council of Bankstown (Bankstown City Council 2010, p.1). They have tips that are supposed to be utilized by both residents and visitors in ensuring that they are safe and their property secure. They are produced in simple language that is easy to understand and they are easily accessible to the residents. They have made a step further by producing them in Chinese, Vietnamese and Arabic. Other initiatives include safe number plates for cars and smoke alarms to guard against both arson crimes and accidental fires.

How This Information can help create a Harmonious Society in Bankstown

Through the understanding that poverty may be part of the reasons why crime is high, the leadership of Bankstown can put measures in place to alleviate poverty and therefore reduce crime. A better security force is also important so as to ensure that criminals are dealt with accordingly and the judicial system can also be empowered so as to ensure that those who damage other people’s property are given prohibitive fines so as to discourage others from engaging in this type of crime.

It is not easy to get someone who has seen another pay heavily for smashing another’s car having the courage to smash the car that belongs to someone else. Also, the dissemination of information on safety measures for both residents and non residents is helpful since it will assist people know risky places and moves, and therefore avoid them. The fact that Bankstown is already doing this is very important.

Conclusion

In conclusion, malicious damage to property is one of the crimes committed by criminals in Bankstown.As city that is located on the Canterbury-Bankstown region of Sydney. Poverty and the intent to humiliate as well as envy lead people into damaging the property of others. A proper police force, informed communities and a good judicial system are some of the ways that can help deal with not only malicious damage to property, but all other forms of crime.

References

Bankstown City Council, 2010. Web.

Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research, 2010. Web.

Heaton, R., 2001. Criminal Law: Cases and Materials (3rd ed.). London: Blackstone Press.

Lawrence, J.Madden, B. & Muir, L., 1999. A Pictorial History of Canterbury Bankstown. Alexandria: Kingsclear Books.

mybooot., 2008. Crime Statistics for New South Wales. Web.

Pearlman, J., 2006. Marked fall in crime passes by Bankstown. Sunday Morning Herald Online. Web.

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