Dyer: Shouldn’t a report on crimes such as sexual offenses and homicide be easier to access?


It should be easy to find the federally-mandated Clery campus-security reports for local community colleges, but it’s not.

Some local websites list them under campus security; while at others, searching for words such as “security,” “crime” and “Clery” come up with nothing or only the previous year’s report.

Shouldn’t a report that shows crimes such as sexual offenses and homicide be easier to access?

The Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security and Crime Statistics Act requires colleges and universities that receive federal funding to disseminate a public annual security report to employees and students every Oct. 1, according to clerycenter.org, the website for the nonprofit Clery Center.

Jeanne Clery was 19 when she was raped and murdered in her college dormitory. Her parents, Connie and Howard Clery, could not have known the danger she was in; standards for campus crime reporting did not exist in 1986, according to the website.

Crime statistics listed by the colleges are, according to the reports: Murder/non-negligent manslaughter, negligent manslaughter, rape, fondling, incest, statutory rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, motor vehicle theft, arson, domestic violence, dating violence and stalking.

The welcome news from the Clery reports for the community colleges with locations in Apache Junction, Queen Creek and San Tan Valley are that there were only two crimes reported --- a motor-vehicle theft at the Superstition Mountain Campus of Central Arizona Community College, 805 S. Idaho Road in Apache Junction, of a CAC-owned golf cart that was recovered; and a burglary at CAC’s San Tan Campus, 3736 E. Bella Vista Road in San Tan Valley. There were no crimes reported at the Communiversity at Queen Creek.

Beyond the crime statistics, the reports are a treasure trove of information, plus phone numbers and websites for reporting crimes and for help for victims. For instance, CAC’s report includes sections on crime and emergency reporting procedures; security awareness and crime prevention; sexual-harrassment policies; active consent; sexual assault reporting procedures; off-campus counseling, mental health, or other services for victims of sex offenses; obtaining an order of protection or injunction against harassment; alcohol and drug policies and prevention; weapon policies; and fire reporting and evacuation procedures.

Crime at community colleges is a concern of mine beyond my work life. In my free time I take continuing-education classes at a Phoenix-metro community college. Sometimes the classes are late at night or in the early morning. I’ve never been a victim of a crime at the college, but I am reminded of situational awareness there when I see the wall poster that warns of keeping track of backpacks as they may be stolen.


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Richard Dyer
Apache Junction/Gold Canyon and Queen Creek Independent