Annual security report shows decrease in campus crime


Photo credit/ Kelsey Van Horn

Satara Dickey, Editor-in-Chief

This year’s annual security report was released Sept. 28, but this year, contains less information than in year’s past.

Each year, in compliance with the Jeanne Cleary Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Crime Statistics Act, the Department of Campus Safety issued a security report.

The report, which is required by federal law, contains policy statements as well as crime statistics from the 2014 academic year.

The report is broken down into several parts, including on and off campus offenses and incidents that took place in Marywood’s resident halls and on the South Campus property.

The report showed that disciplinary referrals on campus and in residents increased for Drug Law violations while Liquor Law violations slightly decreased for both.

“For as much as we like to promote the fact that we are a dry campus […] you have to expect some [violations] based on the fact that we are a college,” said Mike Finegan, chief of campus safety.

Absent on this year’s report were statistics for theft and vandalism on campus. In 2013 there were 29 instances of theft and 27 reports of vandalism.

According to Finegan, the data wasn’t included “to lighten the load a little bit.”

In the past, his department thought the Act required inclusion of those statistics; however, the Cleary Act only requires departments to list theft and vandalism that is done as a hate crime or motivated by bias, according to Finegan.

The statistics for both theft and vandalism are listed on a separate report required by Act 1988-73 Uniformed Crime Report (UCR). This act requires the release of crime statistics and their rates for students and employees, according to Marywood’s website.

In 2014, there were 25 instances of theft and 29 instances of vandalism, according to the UCR.

The UCR also breaks down the rate of crime by percentage, theft is listed as 0.68 % and vandalism is listed 0.79%. According to the Marywood website, the index rate is calculated based on the actual number of Full Time Equivalent (FTE) students and employees according to a state-mandated formula.

“I do think it’s a very useful thing to be made public, ” said Collin Widdick, senior psychology major. “While the results aren’t anything very surprising, it is informative to know to what degree violations are happening on campus.”

Finegan said students should pay attention to the annual reports.

“Any time a student can educate themselves about where they go to school [it] is important [to do so],” he said.

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Twitter: @SataraLynnTWW