Taskforce Guardian tackles youth offending in Townsville

Townsville youth offenders have been the target of operations by local police as Taskforce Guardian completes its fourth deployment to the district this year.

The specialist team comprising of Queensland Police Service detectives and expert Youth Justice workers has continued to curb youth offending, with the latest deployment between November 15 and 23 resulting in the arrest of 60 people on 124 charges, 51 of which were young people.

During this deployment, the Taskforce conducted Operation Saturation between November 16 to 18. Crime data analysis identified crime hotpots which police saturated during peak times, deterring and disrupting offending to enhance community safety.

During Operation Saturation, 27 people were arrested on 62 charges. Including 21 young offenders, 10 of which were diverted from court.

Importantly, Taskforce Guardian alongside local police engaged with a number of community stakeholders including local public transport representatives, business owners and residents to discuss issues affecting them and co-ordinate an appropriate policing response to support community safety.

To date across the four deployments to Townsville, Taskforce Guardian has apprehended 144 people, charging them with a total of 288 offences including unlawful use of a motor vehicle, break and enter, bail breaches, and robbery.

The borderless nature of the Taskforce enables police to respond swiftly and provide immediate support to targeted areas that need it most through high visibility policing, bail checks, engagement and diversion for at-risk young people and community engagement.

During this deployment, 98 people were stopped and engaged with and 28 young people were provided cautions or diversions.

Taskforce Guardian also works closely with key support services and local resources to engage at-risk youth in health, education, disability services, and First Nations initiatives.

Townsville District Acting Superintendent Dean Cavanagh said Taskforce Guardian is an asset helping ensure a robust police presence in Townsville and across Queensland.

“Community safety is our number one priority, and we have a zero-tolerance approach to any serious repeat offenders that continually put our local community at risk,” Acting Superintendent Dean Cavanagh said.

“Taskforce Guardian will continue to work alongside our local police to disrupt and deter youth offending in key locations.”

“This is the fourth deployment to Townsville, and it won’t be the last.”

“We want the community to be assured that we hear their concern and have police out there on the ground day and night, working to protect them.”

If you have information for police, contact Policelink by providing information using the online suspicious activity form 24hrs per day at www.police.qld.gov.au/reporting or call 131 444.

Report crime information anonymously via Crime Stoppers. Call 1800 333 000 or report online at www.crimestoppersqld.com.au.

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