In the two years to June 2015, alcohol related assaults in the Pyrmont area have risen by 46 percent, according to the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research (BOCSAR).
Pyrmont falls just outside of the Sydney CBD lockout zone, which was introduced in 2014 in an attempt to curb alcohol-fuelled violence in the city. The lockouts, which have contributed to the closure of a number of foodservice businesses including Hugo’s in Kings Cross and The Flinders in Darlinghurst, have resulted in a drop in late-night assaults, with a recent analysis of police data showing a 20.8 percent reduction in sexual assaults, 43 percent reduction in assaults causing grievous bodily harm and a 50.3 percent reduction in assaults causing actual bodily harm.
Apart from Pyrmont, there has been no significant change in the level of alcohol-fuelled violence in other suburbs outside of the lockout zone, including Newtown, Double Bay and Bondi.
Some of the rise in alcohol-related assaults in Pyrmont has been driven by assaults at the Star casino. A BOCSAR review has found that between February and September 2014 there were an average of 6.3 assaults per month, up from 3.5 in the corresponding period for 2013.
According to SMH, this equates to 75 per year -– three times that of the state's most violent venue, Ivy – however the casino is exempt from the "three strikes" scheme for violent venues, which threatens venues with the loss of their liquor licence should they be the scene of continued violent incidents relating to alcohol consumption.
A spokeswoman for the Star said the figures were misleading because recent renovations had bought an increase in patrons yet the casino was also turning more people away as part of its enforced of the responsible service of alcohol.