Crime doubles close to liquor outlets 8 April 2012
Rates of serious violent crime double within 900m of a liquor outlet, a new study has found. And the nationwide study has confirmed that the more liquor stores an area has, the more likely it is to have a higher rate of serious violent crime, regardless of poverty and other factors. The findings by researchers at University of Canterbury’s GeoHealth laboratory confirm a smaller study by the Alcohol Advisory Council (Alac) and have led to renewed calls for greater community control over licensing applications. Study lead author Peter Day said the study ranked the country’s 286 police station areas into five groups (quintiles) according to their rate of serious violent crime. “The number of alcohol outlets consistently increased with increasing quintiles of serious violent offence rates,” the study said. A more detailed analysis was performed using census “mesh blocks” where the country was divided into 41,393 small blocks representing about 100 people in each.