A six-month synthetic DNA trial is about to get underway in Geelong as part of a crime prevention plan by the Andrews Labor Government to reduce residential burglaries.
Minister for Police Lisa Neville today joined Victoria Police and other members of Safety Alliance Victoria in Norlane to launch Protect | Prevent.
Kits of synthetic DNA have been delivered to 500 homes in Geelong, which include an invisible liquid product that contains a unique DNA code.
Residents apply the liquid to valuables, such as TVs, computers and jewellery, and if an item is stolen and recovered, police can reunite the item with its original owner through forensic analysis of the liquid’s unique code.
The most recent crime statistics show that there were 1,826 residential burglaries in the City of Greater Geelong in the twelve months from April 2016-March 2017.
While the rate remains stable compared to the previous year, the Labor Government will continue working to reduce the harm of residential burglaries with innovative programs such as this, as well as the additional ten police officers allocated to Geelong in the past few months.
A key finding from successful trials in the UK and New Zealand is that the DNA technology is a deterrent to thieves.
The six-month pilot will get underway on 1 September in Geelong, with a parallel pilot being undertaken in Whittlesea.
The pilot programs are an initiative of Safety Alliance Victoria, a partnership between Victoria Police, RACV, Crime Stoppers, Neighbourhood Watch and Federation University Australia.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Police Lisa Neville
“This is an innovative crime-fighting tool that will make thieves think twice about breaking into someone’s home. This is just another thing we’re doing to keep the people of Geelong safe, as we work to prevent crime before it happens.”
“The liquid is invisible and you only need a pinhead of the unique DNA code to identify the rightful owner of a stolen product.”
“This will be a major deterrent for thieves and is just one of many crime prevention initiatives Safety Alliance Victoria will trial in an effort to reduce residential burglaries.”
Reviewed 19 August 2020