Citizen's Arrest

Purpose of this policy

To explain a powers of citizen’s arrest.

Department position

The Department does not encourage the use of this policy.  However, principals should be aware of the policy in case they are in a situation requiring immediate action.


The Crimes Act 1958 authorises citizen’s arrest whereby any person may:

  • arrest and deliver to the police any person found committing an offence provided they believe on reasonable grounds that the arrest is necessary to:
    • preserve ‘public order’
    • prevent an offence starting, continuing or repeating
    • protect an individual’s safety or welfare.

Section 462A of the Crimes Act 1958 authorises the use of such force not disproportionate to the objective as a person believes is reasonable grounds to be necessary to:

  • prevent the commission, continuance or completion of an indictable offence; or
  • lawfully arrest a person committing or suspected or committing any offence.

Related policies

Related legislation

  • Section 458 of the Crimes Act 1958
  • Section 462A of the Crimes Act 1958