Police to tackle boozy violence
Police performing an arrest during Operation Unite in 2011. Photo: Andrew Sheargold
Police are preparing to crack down on alcohol-fuelled violence, binge drinking, and anti-social behaviour across the territory's nightspots this weekend.
Extra police are expected to be deployed to Civic over the three day Operation Unite, a multi-jurisdictional exercise aiming to draw attention to alcohol misuse.
The swelling of police numbers will complement usual City Beat patrols, which patrol the Civic nightspots every week, and the Alcohol Crime Targeting Team, which was created in 2010 to help enforce liquor licensing laws.
The operation will begin on Friday night and end on Sunday, and newly graduated police constables are expected to play a role.
Nine alcohol-related arrests were made during last year's operation, including two for assault and one for urinating on a police vehicle. A further four people were taken into protective custody for intoxication. Four drink drivers were caught at the weekend, with 584 random breath tests conducted.
Police also had to deal with a large influx of Rebels who were in the ACT for an annual ride.
ACT Policing say there had been an overall fall in the number of people arrested for intoxication or alcohol-related offences. But Operational Commander Superintendent Brett Kidner said bringing about permanent change to drinking culture was a long-term effort.
Superintendent Kidner said that Canberrans should avoid drinking themselves into an ''unhealthy state'' over the festive season.
''The operation is not about restricting people from having a good time when going out to public places; instead it is about raising awareness in the community about risky drinking behaviours,'' Superintendent Kidner said.
''We need to look after ourselves, and our mates, and not allow excessive drinking to be used as an excuse for engaging in violence or anti-social behaviour.''
The operation is co-ordinated through the Australia New Zealand Policing Advisory Agency, and is supported by the Australian National Council on Drugs.