Indiana State data show low rates of violence

(WTHI Photo, file)

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (AP) — Indiana State University police are working to assure the public that the campus is safe after two recent incidents, including a shooting involving two students.

The university recently released its Annual Security and Fire Report, which showed burglary far outweighed violent crime incidents on campus between 2011 and 2013.

The statistics are gathered as part of the federal Clery Act, which requires colleges and universities to disclose information about crime on and around their campuses.

ISU Police Chief Joe Newport told the Tribune-Star the data show ISU is “good to above average” on an overall safety scale.

“We have our moments, just like any public institution has,” Newport said. “It’s important for us to be well prepared and respond appropriately, whether that be by arrest or referral to ISU’s student conduct system.”

According to the report, ISU saw 24 on-campus burglaries in 2013, 17 in 2012 and 28 in 2011. One murder was reported during that time, along with three robberies, six aggravated assaults and two vehicle thefts.

A total of 14 forcible sex offenses were reported on campus during that period. Nearly all were among acquaintances, and many involved alcohol, Newport said.

He said the report contains “a greater emphasis on sexual violence, violence against women in general, dating and domestic violence and stalking” in response to the federal Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act. The act requires institutions to compile statistics for crimes including dating violence, domestic violence, stalking and sexual violence.

ISU lists five on-campus dating/domestic violence incidents for 2013, including three in residence halls and one on public property. It lists four non-campus incidents, along with one on-campus stalking incident in 2013.

The report also included arrests for on-campus weapons violations. ISU reported one in 2013, two in 2012 and two in 2011.

“Our numbers are low, but when you have an open campus, with thousands of parking spaces and cars coming and going … there is always a concern about people who illegally carry firearms,” Newport said.

Recently, a threat about a school shooting surfaced on Yik Yak. It proved unfounded but fed into the campus safety concerns, because of a greater awareness of such incidents stemming from campus shootings in recent years, Newport said.

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