INSIDE BINGHAMTON UNIVERSITY
2003 crime reports level with 2002
By : Sarah Lifshin
Binghamton University continues to provide a safe environment for its students, faculty and staff. The number of criminal reports made to University Police remained level last year with 2002, despite the addition of 650 students in Mountainview College.
In the annual report to Binghamton University Council last week on campus safety, Anthony Ferrara, vice president for administration, said there was only one additional report of criminal activity in 2003 than in 2002, representing a 33 percent decline in reports since 1998. There were 1,016 total reports in 2003, up from 1,015 in 2002 and down from 1,206 in 2001. “This indicates that even with the addition of more students in the new Mountainview College, BU continues to provide a safe environment,” said Ferrara, who also commended the efforts of the Environmental Health and Safety staff during the meeting.
The majority of reports to University Police are made in six categories: criminal mischief, larceny, disorderly conduct, harassment, false fire alarms and trespassing. Most of the categories saw declines, with the exception of disorderly conduct and harassment.
The greatest increase was seen in larceny, which Ferrara attributed to an increase of debit/credit card thefts that follows a national trend; 60 thefts were reported at BU in 2003.
Among other increases were the number of reports of marijuana use on campus, jumping from about 75 to 90, said Vice President for Student Affairs Rodger Summers, who said the increase results from an improved relationship between students and University Police.
Summers, chairman of the Binghamton University Alcohol and Other Drug Task Force, also reported a decrease in alcohol-related incidents, which is ahead of the national trend where consumption of alcohol on college campuses remains about the same. A new BU campaign, “Think about It,” is aimed at decreasing the number of alcohol and drug-related incidences, Summers said. The campaign will be a collaborative effort between five departments to create a change in student culture and behavior.