Mercer University reported a decline in campus crime during 2017, according to a report released last month. The annual Campus Crime Report, officially called the Annual Crime Awareness & Campus Security Report and Annual Fire Safety Report, was published Sept. 28. The report covers each calendar year from 2015 to 2017.
Universities are required to release such information under the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act, or Clery Act.
The Campus Crime Report provides statistical data for the number of criminal and hate offenses involving Mercer University students and lists the number of disciplinary proceedings initiated due to infractions involving weapons, drugs and alcohol.
The data below refers to incidents reported on the Macon undergraduate campus.
There were seven instances of rape on campus in 2017, which was a decrease from 2016. Ten rapes were reported in 2016 and seven in 2015. All but one occurred in student housing in this time period.
One report of fondling was made in 2017 and one in 2016, down from the five cases in 2015. Almost every instance occurred in on-campus residences.
Robbery and burglary
There were no robberies in 2017, down from the two in 2016 and the singular occurrence in 2015.
However, burglaries were much more common; in 2017, nine crimes were reported, a slight decrease from the 11 in 2016. This rate increased from the five counts in 2015. Six of the burglaries in 2016 and three of the burglaries in 2017 occurred in campus residences.
Motor vehicle theft
There were four occurrences on campus in 2017, down from nine in 2016 but equal to the four in 2015.
The report lists one case of aggravated assault on campus in 2017 and one in 2015. Neither occurred in student housing.
There were five counts of arson in 2016, and two occurred in student residences.
Domestic and dating violence
Domestic violence experienced a downward trend. The report lists one count in 2015 and two the year after, but none in 2017.
However, the number of dating violence offenses has increased each year. There were 10 counts in 2017, six in 2016 and five in 2015.
Domestic violence is defined for the purpose of annual campus crime statistics as “felony or misdemeanor crimes of violence committed by a current or former spouse of the victim,” by someone who has a child with the victim, or another situation involving family, according to the report.
Stalking rates fluctuated slightly. There were five occurrences in 2017, eight in 2016 and seven in 2015.
Hate offenses are crimes motivated by “race, religion, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, disability, ethnicity, (or) national origin,” according to the report. There is one hate offense, a count of vandalism in an on-campus residence, listed in 2016.
Only one arrest was made on campus. This was a charge for carrying or possessing a weapon in 2017.
An arrest was made off-campus in 2015 for drug abuse.