AMHERST, MA (WGGB/WSHM) - We are learning about new crime statistics coming out of UMass-Amherst, the state’s largest public university.
Every year, an annual security report is required to be filed by every college campus' police department, under the federal law.
Taking a look at the report from UMass-Amherst, a comparison of crime numbers in the past three years shows positives and negatives.
New data coming out of UMass-Amherst shows an increase in rapes last year compared to the previous two years.
There were a total of twenty-three in 2018, up by five from the year before.
Of the twenty-three last year, twenty-two of them were reported on campus, sixteen of those in residence halls.
UMass tells Western Mass News in a statement:
“As on many college campuses, prevention and reporting of sexual assault at UMass is the focus of significant concern...In recent years, the university has undertaken a comprehensive educational effort on campus around sexual assault reporting, prevention, and bystander training.”
Looking at other reported crimes on campus, the news is more positive.
In the last three years, there were no murders or manslaughter cases at UMass.
Aggravated assault has gone down, with eleven in 2016, five in 2017, and then four last year.
Burglary has also gone down gradually every year, with just twelve reported incidents in 2018.
Lastly, domestic violence incidents are also decreasing gradually, with just one additional reported case from 2017 to 2018.
With these newly released numbers, a UMass spokesperson tells us in a statement
“Providing for the safety of UMass students and our entire campus community is a foremost priority for the university.”
University officials say 2018 showed progress in terms of liquor law arrests and violations on campus.
They credit their efforts on educating students starting their first day on campus about the laws regarding the purchase, possession, and consumption of alcohol.