Superintendent Darryl Johnson.
Superintendent Darryl Johnson. Warren Lynam

Top cop's stern warning on DV, and it's mostly aimed at men

HE has had enough.

The Sunshine Coast's top cop, District Officer Superintendent Darryl Johnson has called a press conference to let the community know something has to change concerning the region's shocking domestic violence statistics.

The man who once led Queensland's Security and Counter-Terrorism group has made it clear police won't hesitate to respond to charges of domestic violence and assault.

"I make no apologies for our absolute zero tolerance approach," he said.

Speaking from District Headquarter's Sup Johnson said a number of "serious criminal charges relating to assault" which had been filed in the last fortnight had prompted his call for change.

"In the last couple of weeks there have been a number of incidents that have really disturbed me," he said.

"Home is a place of safety, yet we continue to see acts of violence between family members, some of which have resulted in serious charges.

"It saddens us, as a police agency, that we need to continue to respond to these."

While incidences of domestic violence were on the up across Queensland, Sup Johnson said the Sunshine Coast "had a problem".

In the past year, he estimated the number of domestic violence orders taken out on the Coast had increased by 20% and the number of breeches had increased by 30%.

"Whether this is the number of domestic violence acts that have increased, and I suspect it is, with the increase of drugs and alcohol, or if it is the increased confidence to report that has led to the increased statistics," Sup Johnson said.

Either way, the police response was going to be one of "zero tolerance".

The majority of cases involved men, with only a "very small percentage" involving women, Sup Johnson said.

"There needs to more increased education of our young men in the community that reinforces violence against women, or any violence, is not appropriate and cannot be tolerated by the community."

Sup Johnson said many victims did return to their partners and police accepted this, but "violence against females will not be tolerated".

"If police respond and there is evidence of domestic violence, police will take action," he said.



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