Report shows rise in campus crimes

by James Joy

Alcohol violations and forcible sexual assaults on campusincreased in 2003, according to Simpson Security’s annualreport.

The report shows a 62 percent increase in alcohol-relatedarrests and referrals in 2003. Also, violations on campus rose from57 in 2001 to 91 in 2003.

Forcible sexual assaults offenses are up from one each year tothree in 2003.

“These kinds of offenses can be reported by counselors whoobtain the information through counseling sessions, but they don’trelease any confidential data,” said Chris Frerichs, director ofsecurity.

According to Frerichs, statistics show that authorities arelucky if one out of four sexual assault cases are reported.

“We want students to feel comfortable enough to know that thereare ways to get info to the right people,” Frerichs said. “Ifyou’re unsure who to talk to, go to your housing manager or acounselor for a confidential talk.”

According to Stephanie Krauth, associate dean of students, theincrease in the number of alcohol-related incidents on campus makesthe school’s Social Norms Education program important.

“We’re educating students on reality versus perception ofalcohol,” Krauth said. “We also are pushing the health and wellnessangle.”

However, Krauth mentioned the report misses an important fact:The college doesn’t need very much police assistance.

“What the report doesn’t show is the decline in the times thatthe Indianola Police Department has been needed,” Krauth said.”It’s more intense with the police involved…, without them it ismuch healthier and better for the students.”

Frerichs explained that the numbers on the report do not alwaysreflect the actual number of students that are disciplined.

“These numbers represent everything – students who were caughtand also tips and referrals that were given to us about someone oncampus,” Frerichs said.

The report shows that a majority of all alcohol-relatedviolations occurred on campus. Three happened in non-campuslocations, defined by the report as “off-campus properties owned orcontrolled by Simpson or by recognized student organizations,” andfive happed on public property, defined as “public sidewalks andstreets contiguous with the Simpson campus.”

“I think part of the increase that we see is the better staffand enforcement on campus,” Frerichs said.

The annual security report is required from all colleges thatreceive financial assistance from the government under the JeanneClery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus CrimeStatistics Act.