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What Universities and Colleges Must Report About Campus Crime

September 11, 2000

Colleges and universities are required by federal law to annually report their crime statistics and security policies as well as their programs to promote campus safety and security. Here are some details about the law, the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Statistics Act:

* The issue was championed by Howard and Connie Clery after their daughter Jeanne was murdered at Lehigh University in 1986. Congress enacted the law in 1990 as the Campus Security Act and revised it in 1998.

* Each school must disclose crime statistics for the campus, public areas immediately adjacent to or running through the campus and certain non-campus facilities, including fraternity and sorority housing and remote classrooms. The statistics must be gathered from campus police or security, local law enforcement and other school officials who have "significant responsibility for student and campus activities," such as student judicial affairs directors. Professional mental health and religious counselors are exempt from reporting, but they may report to a confidential system.

* Crimes in seven major categories must be reported: criminal homicide, sex offenses, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, motor vehicle theft and arson.

* Schools must also report liquor violations, drug violations and illegal weapons possession that result in arrest or discipline.

* Statistics must be categorized geographically as "on campus," "residential facilities for students on campus," non-campus buildings or "on public property" such as streets and sidewalks. The report must also indicate whether an incident or crime involving bodily injury was a "hate crime."

* Schools with police or security departments must within two business days record in a public crime log any crime that occurs within their jurisdiction or is reported to them, along with the "nature, date, time, and general location of each crime" as well as its disposition, if known. Certain sensitive information may be withheld.

* The log must be publicly available during normal business hours, remain available for 60 days and subsequently be made available within two business days of a request.

Sources: UCI; Security on Campus Inc.

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