By Kalyn Story | Staff Writer
Baylor’s 2016 Annual Fire Safety and Security Report shows a 360 percent increase in reported rapes on campus in 2015.
Baylor’s 2016 Clery Crime Statistics report recorded five on-campus rapes in 2014 and 23 in 2015.
The Clery Crime Statistics report defines rape as, “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. This definition includes any gender of victim or perpetrator.”
The Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Crime Statistics Act, passed in 1990, requires all colleges and universities who receive federal funding to share information about crime on campus and efforts to improve campus safety, according to The Clery Act’s website.
“Under Title IX and the Clery Act, institutions must provide specific information, options and resources to survivors in cases of sexual violence. Institutions must have a prompt and equitable process for resolving complaints. This information is to be made publicly accessible through the university’s annual security report,” according to clerycenter.org.
The Clery Crime Statistics report provides the number of reported crimes on and around campus. These crimes have not necessarily been investigated and confirmed. Reports of drug or alcohol violations are an exception and an arrest does need to be made for it to be included in the report.
In February 2015, Baylor hired its first full-time Clery Act Specialist, Shelley Deats. Deats attributes the spike in sexual assault reports on campus to increased education and training of students and staff on the importance of reporting and how to report.
“We have made a huge push to make it easy to report crime on campus,” Deats said. “We probably do need to continue expanding education to students about Clery.”
Baylor also saw an increase in reports of fondling, going from one reported incident in 2014 to three in 2015. Dating violence also increased from two reports to six, and stalking reports increased from three to 21.
In the report, fondling is defined as, “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.”
This year, more than 750 campus security authorities have been trained on Clery and are reporting crimes on campus.
“In training, I stress that I don’t expect students and staff to understand Clery,” Deats said. “I want everyone to be aware of what resources are offered and let them know we are here for them. It is extremely important for everyone to know that you can report and still remain confidential.”
Deats believes a full-time Clery specialist is vital to a university’s effort in following Clery. She said it is not uncommon for the Clery Act to be a secondary thought and priority for a university, but Baylor is helping to change that by having a full-time specialist.
“Baylor has realized how important Clery is,” Deats said. “I can’t even imagine a university not having a full-time person in this position. It’s scary.”
In January of this year, Baylor formed a Clery Act Compliance Committee to review Clery geography and new policies.
Clery geography includes crimes that occur on campus, in student housing, non-campus non-contiguous areas and public properties. The Clery Crime Statistics report includes crimes committed on and around all of Baylor‘s campus.
Baylor’s 2015 numbers are close to other similarly-sized universitys’ Clery Reports, although the Department of Justice suggests that Clery Reports nationwide are far lower than the actual number of assaults. The Department of Justice reported in 2015 that, statistically, 1 in 5 women will be sexually assaulted during their college careers.