Police target drunken crimes

By CHRIS LYNCHchrisl@gladstoneobserver.com.au

GLADSTONE police have been given new powers designed to combat public disorder offences in and around pubs and clubs, and they aren't adverse to introducing lockouts at local night spots either.

New legislation was passed in state parliament last week attaching bigger fines and jail terms to public nuisance and alcohol related offences.

The tough stance comes in the wake of a man being killed in Brisbane's CBD for his shoes.

Gladstone police District inspector Rowan Bond said the changes were relevant to the region, particularly Gladstone's CBD on Friday and Saturday nights.

'Nearly 50 per cent of our assaults are alcohol and drug related,' he said.

Dist Insp Bond said police were discussing lockouts with pub and club owners, as well as the liquor licensing department.

'The night club curfew is something that comes up from time to time,' he said.

'It's already been a success in places like the Gold Coast and Yeppoon.

'We're working with them on it now, but there are a lot of issues to be covered and things to be changed.'

He said curfews would address safety on two levels.

'At that time of the morning people get into trouble because they're walking around half full,' he said.

'We don't want to see people wan-dering around from establishment to establishment because that's when altercations can occur, and there's also the road safety issue.

'Obviously curfews would be a disadvantage to licensed premises, but we're happy to work with them and look at all the issues.'

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