Motivations and substance use amongst property and violent offenders: Findings from the 2008 & 2013 Illicit Drug Reporting System

Image: Illicit Drug Reporting System logo
Author: Rachel Sutherland, Natasha Sindicich, Lucy Burns

Resource Type: Drug Trends Bulletins

Key findings:
  • The prevalence of property crime remained stable across 2008 & 2013, with 18% of PWID reporting that they had committed a property offence in the month preceding interview. Violent crime remained low and stable at 4% and 3% respectively.
  • In both 2008 and 2013, the majority of property offenders reported being under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol the last time they committed an offence (73% and 71% respectively).
  • In 2008, the largest proportion of drug-affected property offenders reported being under the influence of heroin (32%) and benzodiazepines (31%).
  • Similarly, in 2013, they largely reported being under the influence of benzodiazepines (29%).
  • Property offenders most commonly reported that they had committed their last offence for financial reasons.
  • Amongst those who had committed a violent offence, almost three-quarters reported that they were under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol (73% respectively).
  • In 2008, the largest proportion of violent offenders reported being under the influence of alcohol (36%), followed by methamphetamine (29%). Similarly, in 2013, the largest proportion of violent offenders reported being under the influence of alcohol and heroin equally (32% respectively).
  • The largest proportion of violent offenders reported committing their last violent offence for ‘opportunistic’ reasons.