WA Liberal Premier: Colin Barnett
WA Premier, Colin Barnett has said that if he and his Liberal Party are re-elected in the state election he promises to introduce harsher sentences for people convicted of violent home invasions.
According to ABC News, Barnett says the new laws would see the creation of a minimum jail terms of seven and a half years for anyone who breaks into a home and seriously assault an occupant.
The jail sentence would be increased to 15 years if a sexual assault took place, while juveniles aged 16 and above would face a minimum detention period of three years for either of these offences.
Mr Barnett says the community is demanding tougher penalties. He said he believed that some people in the community felt let down by the court system.
"I'm not going to attack the justice system, this is not about that, but I think in cases when we've seen very violent, vicious attacks, particularly on elderly people, sometime on people with a disability, there is just outrage and abhorrence within the community."
The Premier acknowledged that break-in rates have risen under the current Liberal government and admitted that new measures were needed to crack down on crime.
"Every person in Western Australia has a right to feel safe in their own home," he said.
"This is strong legislation, it's the toughest laws in Australia on home invasions and violent home invasions."
The Police Minister, Liza Harvey has also promised to close a loophole that currently exists in the 'three-strikes' burglary laws.
"A lot of people who commit these home burglaries are repeat offenders. They will get to court having been charged with several offences but that appearance in court is recorded as only one strike.
"The expectations of the community are that people who are repeat offenders, who burgle a number of homes, should go to jail after three offences."
Opposition politicians say they want to see the details of the legislation before declaring whether it would support it.
State elections in Western Australia take place early next month.