On 31st December, 2013 I sent a suggestion to the Attorney General for legislation to pull drunks into line, especially since the spate of “coward punches” we have witnessed of late. To date, I have received no response.
Dear Attorney General,
There has been much in the media recently as to the outrageous drunken behaviour of individuals on our streets.
All the while, the Government is being blamed by the Media for not being tough enough on Crime.
As a criminal lawyer, engaged daily in matters involving offences, I have weighed up the various sections of legislation to see whether a law could be introduced to penalise and perhaps curb the drunken behaviour on our streets involving violence.
I have drafted a law that you might see fit to develop and maybe introduce into the next sitting of Parliament.
It is aimed at the typical drunken yobbo who sees fit to instil fear and terror into members of the public and worse still, on occasions assault members of the public.
Perhaps it should be included in the Crimes Act (rather than the Summary Offences Act) and given a heavier penalty somewhat similar to Intimidation (5 years). A few successful arrests and convictions might make these people think twice about carrying on as they do.
The proposed law is as follows and could be inserted after the Section 11A which deals with Violent Disorder, but requires three persons to be present –
Summary Offences Act 1988
Any person who is intoxicated in a public place and who is engaged in conduct which causes civil unrest or civil disturbance shall be guilty of an offence.
Penalty: 6 mths imprisonment and or 20 penalty units.
For the purposes of this section:
“civil unrest” or civil disturbance” includes – riots, affray, threatening individuals, property damage or threatening property damage, assaulting other persons, intimidation of other persons, fighting with individuals, resisting arrest or other threatening or violent behaviour;
“Intoxicated” means under the influence of alcohol or any other drug.
This offence would act in addition to any more serious offence in cases of assault and injury. However, in cases where there is simply “threats” and “offensive conduct” by such persons, then this offence would certainly act as deterrent to such behaviour by intoxicated persons making a nuisance of themselves on our streets.
Your feedback would be gratefully received.