"For months ACT has called on the Government to escalate its response to escalating crime against retailers. The Government has dragged its feet, deflected, and done little to nothing about the problem. Tonight, something we long feared would happen has happened, a person has been killed in a smash and grab,” says ACT Leader David Seymour.

“We offer our condolences to the family and friends of the man who lost his life. We call on the Government to make this incident a turning point where it finally takes retail crime as seriously as it deserves. That it happened in the Prime Minister’s Electorate should be the final straw that makes the Government respond decisively.

“We have called on the Government to get tough, and smart on the epidemic of retail crime that followed the epidemic of COVID-19. We have proposed idea after idea to try and get on top of the ram raids and the robberies, but the Government has barely listened, if at all.

"We have challenged the Government to expedite its retail crime prevention fund, particularly after someone who sought and didn't get help from it was robbed. That fund has continued at a glacial pace and now needs to be sized up and expedited.

“As a local MP, I’ve gone through periods where every time I return from Parliament I go and visit the latest victims of retail crime. This death could have happened a hundred times before, in hindsight it has only been luck that has prevented something like this happening earlier.

“The Government needs to show a clear pathway of consequences for young offenders, from instant practical penalties as proposed by ACT, to ankle bracelets for offenders, to secure facilities to keep offenders in if they do not comply with earlier sanctions. It then needs to get them back to school or employment.

“It should never have got this far and the Government must now act to ensure it does not happen again."

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David Seymour