Call for minimum sentence for bashing police

THE Queensland Police Union has petitioned the State Government to introduce a mandatory minimum sentence for assaults against police officers.

Toowoomba police prosecutor Sergeant Michael Robinson fronted the Legal Affairs and Community Safety Committee inquiry to plead for a stronger deterrent to be enacted.

Speaking on the union's behalf, he called for a minimum sentence of 10 penalty units - a $1100 fine or jail time.

"Word will get out on the street that police are not to be used as a punching bag (and) that it will cost an offender over $1000 to do it," he said.

Sgt Robinson acknowledged the "good work" that had been done with respect to assaults against police, but said magistrates could still rule that no conviction be recorded.

"There was a Toowoomba case where a police woman was proceeding to resolve a domestic violence incident... and she was kicked twice in her legs. The offender was fined simply $300," he said.

Inquiry chairman Member for Ipswich Ian Berry asked if mandatory sentencing should be extended to "ambulance drivers, nurses, doctors, who all deal with offenders".

Sgt Berry said that was "out of his scope" as a police union member, but agreed the idea had merit.



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