Campus Crime Reporting

In 1986, Jeanne Ann Clery, a 19-year-old Lehigh University freshman was raped and murdered while asleep in her dormitory room. The doors of her residence hall had been propped open, allowing her attacker to enter her residence. Jeanne's parents, Connie and Howard Clery, discovered that students had not been told about 38 violent crimes on the Lehigh campus in the three years before her murder. They joined with other campus crime victims and persuaded Congress to enact the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act.

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A picture of the seal on Dordt's clocktower

Campus Crime Statistics Act Requirements

By October 1 of each year, a school must publish and distribute its annual campus security report. It must be distributed to all enrolled students and current employees directly by publications and mailings, including direct mailing to each individual through the U.S. Postal Service, campus mail, or electronic mail. If the school chooses to fulfill this requirement by posting the crime report on an Internet or Intranet website, an individual notice must be distributed to each student and current employee. Upon request, a school must provide its annual campus security report to a prospective student or prospective employee. The information provided in the Campus Crime Report must include statistics for the three most recent calendar years.

Clery Act's Definition of Campus: Institutions must provide crime statistics for three discrete categories: campus, non-campus buildings or property, and public property.

Campus means

  • Any building or property (including residence halls) owned or controlled by a school within the same reasonably contiguous geographic area and used by the school in direct support of or in a manner related to its educational purposes.
  • Property within the same reasonably contiguous area that is owned by the school but controlled by another person, frequently used by students, and supports the school's purposes (such as food or other retail vendor).

Non-campus building or property means

  • Any building or property owned or controlled by a student organization officially recognized by the school.
  • Any building or property (other than a branch of campus) owned or controlled by the school, that is not within the same reasonable contiguous area, is used in direct support of or in relation to the school's educational purpose, and is frequently used by the students.

Public property means

  • All public property including thoroughfares, streets, sidewalks, and parking facilities that is within the same campus or immediately adjacent to and accessible from the campus. This would not include, for example, highways that are adjacent to the campus, but that are separated from the campus by a fence or other man-made barrier.

Crimes Included on Campus Security Report: (Crimes occurring within the last three years that were reported to law enforcement or to a campus security authority which occurred on or contiguous to campus).

  • Murder and Nonnegligent Manslaughter: The willful killing of another person through gross negligence.
  • Negligent Manslaughter: The killing of another person through gross negligence.
  • Sex Offenses, forcible: Any sexual act directed against another person, forcibly or against that person's will. Includes forcible rape, forcible sodomy, sexual assault with an object, and forcible fondling.
  • Sex Offenses, non-forcible: Unlawful, non-forcible intercourse. Includes incest and statutory rape.
  • Robbery: The taking, or attempted taking, of anything of value from one person by another, in which the offender uses force or the threat of violence.
  • Aggravated assault: An attack by one person upon another, in which the offender uses or displays a weapon in a threatening manner or the victim suffers severe injury involving apparent broken bones, loss of teeth, possible internal injury, or loss of consciousness.
  • Burglary: The unlawful entry into a building or other structure with the intent to commit a felony or a theft.
  • Motor-vehicle theft: The theft of a motor vehicle, including automobiles, trucks, motorcycles, and mopeds.
  • Arson: To unlawfully and intentionally damage, or attempt to damage, any real or personal property by fire or incendiary device.
  • Liquor-law violations: The violation of laws prohibiting the manufacture, sale, purchase, transportation, possession, or use of alcoholic beverages. Does not include driving under the influence or drunkenness violations.
  • Drug-law violations: The violation of laws prohibiting the production, distribution, and/or use of certain controlled substances and the equipment needed to produce or use them.
  • Weapon-law violations: The violation of laws prohibiting the manufacture, sale, purchase, transportation, possession, concealment, or use of firearms, knives, explosives, or other deadly weapons.

These statistics include offenses referred for campus disciplinary action. The statistics include the number of crimes in each category that manifest evidence of prejudice based on race, religion, sexual orientation, ethnicity, or disability, as prescribed by the Hate Crimes Statistics Act (28 U.S.C. 534). None of the statistical information reflects the degree of the crime, the innocence or guilt of a suspect, or the intent with which the crime may have been perpetrated.

In addition to the required annual campus security report, schools are required to provide a timely warning to the campus community of any occurrences of any crimes that fall within the scope of the Campus Crime Report that are reported to campus security authorities or local police agencies and are considered to represent a threat to students and employees.

Definition of Campus Security Authority According to the Clery Act:

An official of an institution who has significant responsibility for student and campus activities, including, but no limited to, student housing, student discipline, and campus judicial proceedings. Student services staff members (excluding the campus pastor and personal counselors), residence life personnel (including RAs and CAs), the athletic director, team coaches, club advisors, and members of the Student Life Committee are considered campus security authorities and are required, for the purpose of documenting criminal activity and to the allow the college to follow up, to report details of criminal activity to the vice president for student services.

Schools that maintain a campus police or security department must make, keep, and maintain daily logs of any crime reported to the campus police or security department, and any crime that occurs on campus, in a non-campus building or property, or on public property contiguous to campus within the patrol jurisdiction of the campus police or security department. The logs must be written in a manner that is easily understood. For each crime, the school must record the following:

  • Date that the crime was reported
  • Nature of the crime
  • Date of the crime (if known)
  • Time of the crime (if known)
  • General location of the crime (if known)
  • Disposition of the complaint (if known)

The logs must be made public, except where prohibited by law or when disclosure would jeopardize the confidentiality of the victim. Schools are required to update logs with new information when available, but no later than two business days after the information is received, unless the disclosure is prohibited by law or would jeopardize the confidentiality of the victim. The school must disclose any information withheld once the adverse effect is no longer likely to occur. The crime log of the most recent 60-day period must be open to the public inspection during normal business hours. The school must make any portion of the log older than 60 days available within two business days of a request for public inspection. A school may withhold information if (and as long as) the release of the information would jeopardize an ongoing criminal investigation or the safety of an individual, cause a suspect to evade detection, or result in the destruction of evidence. A school may withhold only the information that would cause the aforementioned adverse effects.

Note: Dordt University's crime log is located within the Student Services Office.

Include a Security Policy which Includes a Statement of Sexual Assault Victim Rights