Copycat Stabbings: Criminologist Examines Australia’s Recent Knife Crime

Following the horrific attack at Bondi Junction Westfield a month ago, Australia has seen dozens of violent knife crimes, as criminologists examine a potential pattern of copycat stabbings.

Criminologist Xanthe Mallett from the University of Newcastle says knife crimes could be linked with social media activity.

Mallett plans to examine 2023 crime data when it’s released in June, she said, “I think it will show that young people are carrying knives more in public and are actually using them more.”

Criminologist Xanthe Mallett joins The Briefing to breakdown Australia’s knife crime:

Mallett spoke about teenagers who recently stole a Maserati and drove it through the streets of the Gold Coast.

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“Years ago people would have stolen a Maserati to sell on and it would have been targeted. Now it’s breaking them to steal a really high-value car because that’s going to impress your friends,” she said.

Mallett believes that young people today are less driven by financial gain and more by attention on social media.

“If the driver is the social media platforms and the attention they get by posting and liking content, then that’s where we have to focus our attention to break that chain.”

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