What is the Clery Act?
In April 1986, Jeanne Clery's life ended tragically when another student sexually assaulted and murdered her in her residence hall room. Alarmed at the lack of transparency around crime and violence on college campuses, Jeanne's parents committed themselves to create enduring change. In 1990, Congress approved the Crime Awareness and Campus Security Act. Later renamed in Jeanne's memory, the Jeanne Clery Act took effect in 1991.
The Clery Act requires all institutions of higher education that participate in the federal student financial aid program to disclose information about crime on their campuses and in the surrounding communities. The Clery Act affects virtually all public and private universities in the United States and is enforced by the U.S. Department of Education. Campuses that fail to comply with the act face penalties ranging from fines to suspension of federal financial aid.
Clery Act Requirements
The U.S. Department of education authors a handbook for institutions required to comply with the Clery Act. The Handbook for Campus Safety and Security Reporting provides procedures, examples, and references for compliance with the Clery Act.
A general summary of requirements is as follows:
- Collect, classify, and count crime reports and statistics related to crime on or near campus. Info on crimes and geographic classifications can be found by following the menu links on the right.
- Issue timely warnings and campus alerts for Clery crimes that represent an ongoing threat to the safety of students or employees, or emergency notifications upon confirmation of a significant emergency or dangerous situation involving an immediate threat to the health or safety of students or employees.
- Publish an annual security report containing safety and security-related policy statements and criminal statistics and distribute it to all current students and employees, as well as an annual fire safety report containing policy statements and fire statistics for on-campus student housing. At MUW these reports are published together in the Annual Security and Fire Safety Report. Prospective students and employees must be informed of the availability of this report.
- Submit crime statistics to the U.S. Department of Education each fall via a web-based data form.
- Maintain a daily crime log of alleged criminal incidents which is open to public inspection.
- Disclose missing student notification procedures that pertain to students residing in on-campus student housing facilities.
Clery Crime Classifications
The Clery Act requires reporting of crimes in eight major categories, some with significant sub-categories and conditions.
- Murder / Non-Negligent Manslaughter: The willful (non-negligent) killing of a human being by another.
- Negligent Manslaughter: the killing of another person through gross negligence. Gross negligence is the intentional failure to perform a manifest duty in reckless disregard of the consequences as affecting the life or property of another
Any sexual act directed against another person, without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent.
- Rape: The penetration, no matter how slight, of the vagina or anus with any body part or object, or oral penetration by a sex organ of another person, without the consent of the victim.
- Fondling (assault with sexual motives): The touching of the private body parts of another person for the purpose of sexual gratification, without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of his/her age or because of his/her temporary or permanent mental incapacity.
- Incest: Non-forcible sexual intercourse between persons who are related to each other within the degrees wherein marriage is prohibited by law.
- Statutory Rape: Non-forcible sexual intercourse with a person who is under the statutory age of consent.
The taking or attempting to take anything of value from the care, custody, or control of a person by force or threat of force or violence and/or by putting the victim in fear.
An unlawful attack by one person upon another for the purpose of inflicting severe or aggravated bodily injury. This type of assault usually is accompanied by the use of a weapon or by means likely to produce death or great bodily harm. (It is not necessary that injury result from an aggravated assault when a gun, knife or other weapon is used which could or probably would result in a serious potential injury if the crime were successfully completed.)
The unlawful entry of a structure to commit a felony or a theft. For reporting purposes this definition includes: unlawful entry with intent to commit a larceny or a felony; breaking and entering with intent to commit a larceny; housebreaking; safecracking; and all attempts to commit any of the aforementioned.
Motor Vehicle Theft
The theft or attempted theft of a motor vehicle. (Classify as motor vehicle theft all cases where automobiles are taken by persons not having lawful access, even though the vehicles are later abandoned - including joy riding).
Any willful or malicious burning or attempt to burn, with or without intent to defraud, a dwelling, house, public building, motor vehicle or aircraft, personal property of another, etc.
Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)
The reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) was an amendment to the Clery Act put into place in 2013. It expands the rights afforded to campus survivors of sexual assault, domestic violence, and stalking.
Violence committed by a person who is or has been in a social relationship of a romantic or intimate nature with the victim; The existence of such a relationship shall be determined based on the reporting party's statement and with consideration of the length of the relationship, the type of relationship, and the frequency of interaction between the persons involved in the relationship. For the purpose of this definition:
- Dating violence does not include acts covered under the definition of domestic violence.
- Dating violence includes, but is not limited to, sexual or physical abuse or the threat of such abuse
A felony or misdemeanor crime of violence committed:
- By a current or former spouse or intimate partner of the victim;
- By a person with whom the victim shares a child in common;
- By a person who is cohabitating with or has cohabitated with the victim as a spouse or intimate partner;
- By a person similarly situated to a spouse or the victim under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction in which the crime of violence occurred, or
- By any other person against an adult or youth victim who is protected from that person's acts under the domestic or family violence laws or the jurisdiction in which the crime of violence occurred.
Sexual Assault is an offense that meets the definition of rape, fondling, incest, or statutory rape as used in the FBI's Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) program. Per the National Incident-Based Reporting System User Manual from the FBI UCR Program, a sex offense is "any sexual act directed against another person, without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent." Refer to the definitions above for rape, fondling, incest, and statutory rape.
Engaging in a course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to:
- Fear for the person's safety or the safety of others; or
- Suffer substantial emotional distress.
- Course of conduct means two or more acts, including, but not limited to, acts in which the stalker directly, indirectly, or through third parties, by any action, method, device, or means follows, monitors, observes, surveils, threatens, or communicates to or about, a person, or interferes with a person's property.
- Substantial emotional distress means significant mental suffering or anguish that may, but does not necessarily, require medical or other professional treatment or counseling.
- Reasonable person means a reasonable person under similar circumstances and with similar identities to the victim.
Hate crimes include all of the criminal offenses with the addition of intimidation, vandalism, larceny, and simple assault. The additional crimes will only be counted in the Clery statistics if they are motivated by hate. The categories of bias include the victim's actual or perceived race, religion, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, ethnicity/national origin, and disability.
The unlawful taking, carrying, leading, or riding away of property from the possession or constructive possession of another. Attempted larcenies are included. Embezzlement, confidence games, forgery, worthless checks, etc., are excluded. Motor Vehicle theft is also excluded.
An unlawful physical attack by one person upon another where neither the offender displays a weapon, nor the victim suffers obvious severe or aggravated bodily injury involving apparent broken bones, loss of teeth, possible internal injury, severe laceration, or loss of consciousness.
To unlawfully place another person in reasonable fear of bodily harm through the use of threatening words and/or other conduct, but without displaying a weapon or subjecting the victim to actual physical attack.
Destruction/Damage/Vandalism of Property
To willfully or maliciously destroy, damage, deface, or otherwise injure real o personal property without the consent of the owner or the person having custody or control of it.
Hate Crimes Bias Categories
Bias is a preformed negative opinion or attitude toward a group of persons based on their race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, ethnicity/national origin, disability, or gender identity. Although there are many possible categories of bias, only the following categories are reported:
- Race: A preformed negative attitude toward a group of persons who possess common physical characteristics (e.g., color of skin, eyes, and/or hair; facial features, etc.) genetically transmitted by descent and heredity, which distinguish them as a distinct division of humankind (e.g., Asians, blacks, whites).
- Religion: A preformed negative opinion or attitude toward a group of persons who share the same religious beliefs regarding the origin and purpose of the universe and the existence or nonexistence of a supreme being (e.g., Catholics, Jews, Protestants, atheists).
- Gender: A preformed negative opinion or attitude toward a group of persons because those persons are male or female.
- Gender Identity: Bias based on gender is preformed negative opinion or attitude toward a group of persons because of actual or perceived gender-related characteristics.
- Sexual Orientation: A preformed negative opinion or attitude toward a group of persons based on their sexual attraction toward, and responsiveness to, members of their own sex or members of the opposite sex (e.g., gays, lesbians, heterosexuals).
- Ethnicity/National Origin: A preformed negative opinion or attitude toward a group of persons of the same race or national origin who share common or similar traits, languages, customs and traditions (e.g., Arabs, Hispanics).
- Disability: A preformed negative opinion or attitude toward a group of persons based on their physical or mental impairments/challenges, whether such a disability is temporary or permanent, congenital or acquired by heredity, accident, injury, advanced age or illness.
Arrests & Disciplinary Referrals
Weapon: Carrying, Possessing, Etc.
This is defined as the violation of laws or ordinances prohibiting the manufacture, sale, purchase, transportation, possession, concealment, or use of firearms, cutting instruments, explosives, incendiary devices or other weapons. This classification encompasses weapons offenses that are regulatory in nature
Drug Abuse Violations
Drug Abuse Violations are defined as the violation of laws or ordinances prohibiting the production, distribution and/or use of certain controlled substances and the equipment or devices utilized in their preparation and/or use. The unlawful cultivation, manufacture, distribution, sale, purchase, use, possession, transportation or importation of any controlled drug or narcotic substance. Arrests for violations of state and local laws, specifically those relating to the unlawful possession, sale, use, growing, manufacturing and making of narcotic drugs.
Liquor Law Violations
Liquor Law Violations are defined as the violation of state or local laws or ordinances prohibiting the manufacture, sale, purchase, transportation, possession or use of alcoholic beverages, not including driving under the influence and drunkenness.
Campus Security Authority
What is a CSA?
A CSA is a person referred to as a campus security authority by the Clery Act. CSA's are a vital part of data collection for the annual safety and security report.
The Clery Act requires MUW to provide an annual campus safety and fire report. In addition to input from law enforcement, certain positions are designated as Campus Security Authorities (CSA) for the purpose of providing information for this report. CSAs are usually found in departments responsible for, but not limited to, student and campus activities.
How Are CSAs Identified?
The law defines the following four categories of CSAs:
- University Police (UP) Department sworn law enforcement personnel and department administrators.
- Non-police people or offices responsible for campus security—community service officers, campus contract security personnel, parking enforcement staff, personnel providing access control and/or security at campus facilities, athletic events or other special events, safety escort staff, residential community assistants and other similar positions.
- Officials with significant responsibility for student and campus activities—an Official is defined as any person who has the authority and the duty to take action or respond to particular issues on behalf of the University. To determine which individuals of organizations are CSAs, consider job functions that involve relationships with students. Look for Officials (i.e., not support staff) whose functions involve relationships with students. If someone has significant responsibility for student and campus activities, then they would be considered a CSA. Some examples of CSAs in this category include, but are not limited to: academic deans; student affairs / residential life officials; coordinator of Greek affairs (or related positions); athletic administrators, including directors, assistant directors and coaches; student activities coordinators and staff; student judicial officials; faculty and staff advisors to student organizations; student center building staff; student peer education advisors; and administrators at branch campuses.
- Any individual or organization specified in an institution's statement of campus security policy as an individual or organization to which students and employees should report criminal offenses.
Campus Security Authority Reporting
It is imperative that we maintain an effective way to manage reports that Campus Security Authorities receive. The university requires CSA’s to notify the MUW Police Department about crime information as soon as they become aware of it by completing this CSA Incident Report form. CSAs should not investigate crimes or attempt to determine whether in fact a crime occurred. Rather, a CSA’s obligation is to simply report the information as soon as possible.
If you are in doubt as to whether a crime is reportable, please err on the side or reporting the matter. If you have any questions, please contact MUW Police Department at 662-241-7777.
Annual Campus Security & Fire Safety Report
Annual Campus Security and Fire Safety Reports are requirements of the Jeanne Clery Act and must be published each year by October 1.
Each Annual Campus Security and Fire Safety Report documents three calendar years of select campus crime statistics, summaries of campus security policies and procedures, and information on the basic rights guaranteed victims of sexual assault. At MUW, we publish a combined Security & Fire Report which includes information on fire safety policies and statistics for the past three calendar years. Federal law requires schools make the reports available to all current students and employees, and prospective students and employees must be notified of its existence and given a copy upon request.