Police: Don't take law into your own hands
POLICE are reminding community members not to take the law into their own hands after photos of alleged juvenile offenders appeared online.
Acting Senior Sergeant David Tierney said it was an offence under the Youth Justice Act to publish any material that identified a juvenile offender by any means.
Police have received a number of complaints regarding people posting photos of juveniles on both personal Facebook accounts and community Facebook pages.
The complaints are in response to a string of personal property thefts around town.
Snr Sgt Tierney urged people to be patient and let police do their job.
"We are not trying to put blame back on victims but what they can do is take a little bit more caution in securing their property," he said.
"We understand if someone enters your property it's an invasion and we understand the frustration.
"You can take photos of the offender but you can't publish them.
"Some of the time photos are being published before the police even know what's going on.
"Recently some pictures have been posted that are of the wrong person."
Snr Sgt Tierney also advised that the Dalby Neighbourhood Watch Facebook page had no affiliation to Dalby police and urged people to use the page for its true purpose and the benefit of the community.
"The Neighbourhood Watch page was started by a well-meaning member of the public but it seems to have strayed from the ideals for which it was created," he said.
Snr Sgt Tierney said it was always best to contact police in the event of a crime.
"I understand police aren't always going to get there straight away but take a detailed description and we can then contact people and find out who they are and lodge formal complaints," he said.
He also warned it was only a matter of time before a parent of a juvenile who had been posted online took legal action.
"Somewhere along the track a parent of one of these offenders is not going to take kindly to it," he said.
"We're not inclined to take action but remember it is an offence."