Reported incidents of domestic violence have more than doubled in NSW over the past 10 years, with the spike attributed to a change in the way authorities respond to the crime.
A report by the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research (BOCSAR) released on Thursday revealed domestic violence incidents recorded by the police in the decade up to 2021 increased by 110 per cent, from 8120 to 17,063.
The incidents typically involved threats, intimidation and verbal abuse.
BOCSAR executive director Jackie Fitzgerald said stalking and intimidation offences had substantially increased across all parts of the criminal justice system.
Police had upped legal proceedings by 164 per cent, court actions increased 64 per cent and prison sentences doubled.
Legal proceedings against Indigenous people for stalking and intimidation offences increased 274 per cent between 2012 and 2021.
Last year Indigenous people accounted for 28 per cent of domestic violence court cases and more than half (52 per cent) of prison sentences.
Of the 272 adults in prison for domestic stalking and intimidation in December more than a third are Indigenous.
"The rise in stalking/intimidation charges over the past 10 years appears to reflect a changing appreciation of the seriousness and breadth of domestic and family violence by law enforcement, rather than changing behaviours in the community," Ms Fitzgerald said.
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Australian Associated Press
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