Clery report shows increase in student alcohol possession

Jessie Hellmann

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A report released by the Public Safety Office showed more students got in trouble last school year than in the previous year for drinking on campus.

The office of Public Safety released The Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act, or Clery Act, as required by federal law on Oct. 1.

The number of cases of students being referred to to the university for discipline for drinking jumped from 152 in 2010 to 310 in 2011- a jump of 103 percent.

“It could be because more kids are drinking,” said Public Safety Director Steven Woodall.  “(But) the efforts of university staff, Housing and Residence life, Public safety and other staff probably helped the number increase (the number of students being caught).”

He said an increase of parties on campus involving alcohol could also result in the number of students getting in trouble because multiple students will be in the area.

The number of thefts in housing that occurred decreased 21 percent, from 61 to 48 occurences.

Woodall said this decrease could be because public safety has stressed the importance of locking doors and paying attention to personal property.

He said electronic devices are getting smaller and harder to steal, which could also contribute to the theft decrease.

On the flip side, thefts that occurred on campus, in places such as the Rice Library or the Recreation, Fitness and Wellness Center, increased 25 percent, from 56 to 70 thefts.

Woodall said having more commuters on campus last year could have spurred the increase.

Assistant Director of Public Safety Steven Bequette said the law, which requires universities to form the report, was passed so universities wouldn’t be able to “fudge” crimes on campus to attract more students.

The report is required of public universities under federal law and was passed in 1990.

“There’s nothing phony going on here. We over-report, if anything,” Bequette said.

The Clery report can be found online at: