Report Indicates Decrease in Campus Crime
Published: Thursday, September 27, 2012
Updated: Thursday, September 27, 2012 15:09
Last week, the Smith College Campus Police Department released the annual Jeanne Clery Campus Security and Fire Safety Report. The report details all crime and fire occurrences over the past three years, as well as crime prevention and safety tips for all members of the Smith campus.
Campus police released the data for 2009, 2010 and 2011, showing a marked decrease in crime from 2010 to 2011, except in the case of Motor Vehicle Theft. By far the most common crimes on campus fall under the Burglary category, though crime was low overall in all categories. Seven counts of burglary occurred in 2011, five of which were committed in campus houses. This is a vast decrease from 2010, however, in which 20 on-campus burglary cases were reported to campus police.
Other crimes in 2011 included three cases of forcible sex offense and two motor vehicle theft counts. Overall, the campus has seen no cases of robbery, aggravated assault, manslaughter or arson in the past three years.
The report also listed weapons, drugs and alcohol-related offense. Over the last two years, the campus saw neither any drug law arrests or referrals nor any weapons law arrests or referrals. 62 liquor law referrals were reported in 2011, a decrease from 70 referrals in 2010. At the time of publishing, Campus Police was unavailable for comment on the decrease in crimes from 2010 to 2011.
Finally, the report showed the occurrence of fires on campus. 98 fire drills were conducted each year from 2009-2011, and the campus saw only three actual fires over the past three years, two of which were reported in Gillett House, in 2010 and 2011; the 2011 Gillett House generator fire cost $80,000 in property damages and replacement fees for a new generator. Damage costs from the other two fires were minimal.
In addition to reporting crimes on campus, the report offers safety tips for members of the Smith campus. According to the report, “Campus police believes that caution can make you free. Building a healthy avoidance of risk into your daily routine can preserve your freedom to come and go as you please.”
The report goes on to detail security forces on campus and the resources available to students in the case of crimes or emergencies. It also includes a mission statement and safety tips.
“Make it a habit to be cautious around campus, in buildings, and in transit,” the report advises. “Campus police hopes you will make the following steps part of your daily routine.” It lists steps such as reporting suspicious behavior immediately, taking advantage of blue lights around campus, locking doors and windows at night and many more precautions.
The report was named after Jeanne Clery, a university freshman who, in 1986, was raped and murdered in her college dorm. Following backlash against underreported crimes on college campuses, Congress passed the Clery Act in 1990, requiring that colleges release information concerning crimes on campus.
More information about the Clery Report can be obtained by contacting Campus Police at 413-585-2495.