Journal article

Was an increase in cocaine use among injecting drug users in New South Wales, Australia, accompanied by an increase in violent crime?

L Degenhardt, C Day, W Hall, E Conroy, S Gilmour

BMC Public Health | BIOMED CENTRAL LTD | Published : 2005

Abstract

BACKGROUND: A sharp reduction in heroin supply in Australia in 2001 was followed by a large but transient increase in cocaine use among injecting drug users (IDU) in Sydney. This paper assesses whether the increase in cocaine use among IDU was accompanied by increased rates of violent crime as occurred in the United States in the 1980s. Specifically, the paper aims to examine the impact of increased cocaine use among Sydney IDU upon police incidents of robbery with a weapon, assault and homicide. METHODS: Data on cocaine use among IDU was obtained from the Illicit Drug Reporting System (IDRS). Monthly NSW Police incident data on arrests for cocaine possession/use, robbery offences, homicides..

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