Ohio State Reports Rise In Rape, Dating Violence In 2019

Dec 17, 2020

Data from The Ohio State University reveals an increase in reports of stalking, dating violence and domestic abuse last year.

Each year, Ohio State releases crime-related data in accordance with the federally-required "Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act." From 2018-2019, reports of rape increased from 93 to 118. Hate crimes increased from three to 12.

The Clery report also detailed that reports of stalking increased from 57 to 91, and dating violence reports almost doubled from 35 to 64. Accounts of fondling decreased slightly last year to 43.

Incidents included in the report occured on campus, in off-campus university buildings and property owned by Ohio State or recognized student organizations, and on public property immediately accessible from campus.

Ohio State claims the rise of rape and dating violence claims is due to campus efforts to increase awareness about resources and reporting.

According to Ohio State’s 2019 Campus Climate survey, 32% of students were knowledgeable about where to make a report of sexual assault or sexual misconduct at Ohio State, up from 21% in 2015.

“Safety remains our top priority and we are committed to protecting all members of our campus community,” said Ohio State Police Chief Kimberly Spears-McNatt in a press release. “We encourage Buckeyes to report known crimes and to utilize the many safety resources available on Ohio State’s campuses.”

Statistics from 2019 also include hundreds of reports of rape and fondling by Dr. Richard Strauss, a now-deceased sports doctor accused of sexually assaulting hundreds of men during his tenure from the 1978–1998. Despite the fact that the incidents occured decades prior, many victims started coming forward last year following lawsuits from some of Strauss' accusers, who allege Ohio State officials knew about and failed to act on the doctor's misconduct.

In 2019, there were 97 reported incidents of rape tied to Strauss, and 1,209 reports of fondling, adding to the 30 reports of rape and 992 reports of fondling from 2018.