Queensland Premier Campbell Newman says his government would consider tougher penalties for substance abusers as part of a plan to tackle violence.
Those who abuse drugs and alcohol and are arrested for a violent crime in Queensland could face tougher penalties.
Premier Campbell Newman is proposing mandatory drug and alcohol tests for those caught assaulting another person in any of the state’s entertainment precincts.
Hair samples would be taken to determine long-term substance users.
While a negative test would attract normal penalties, abusers would face a new sentencing regime if the plan is adopted as part of the state’s initiatives to tackle alcohol and drug-fuelled violence.
“If they find you’ve taken alcohol or alcohol and drugs, and they are illegal drugs, and if we find on top of that, that you are a long-term habitual user, then there will be escalating higher penalties,” Mr Newman told News Corp.
“At this stage I’m not suggesting there will be minimum mandatory sentences, but there will be higher penalties and magistrates will be required to take that into consideration in their sentencing.
“They will simply have to demonstrate that they were legally taking those steroids for some sort of condition.”
The public has been asked to give the government feedback on its alcohol plan, to be handed down in March.
So far more than 5,500 people have responded with nearly half supporting tougher penalties, with only a minority supporting earlier closing times for pubs and clubs.