Reports Of Rape And Burglary Up At Ohio State

Oct 2, 2019

Ohio State has released its annual Clery Act Report, a document mandated by federal law that details all of the crime reported on and near campus in a year.

The 2018 report showed that incidents of reported rapes increased on campus, from 56 in 2016 to 93 last year.

“We actually expect those numbers to continue to rise for the next few years,” says spokesman Dan Hedman.

Hedman says that the university believes better reporting, rather than increased crime, is most responsible for the uptick.

“We look at that, ironically, as somewhat of a good thing," he says. "We know that these things are likely happening, we want to connect survivors to resources—there’s a lot of resources at Ohio State."

Also up: burglary, more than tripling on campus from 14 in 2017 to 48 last year. But Hedman explains that a few bad actors drove the spike.

“We actually had one individual commit nine burglaries that we’ve tied to that person so far, and the police made an arrest in that case," he says. "That individual was targeting mostly medical center facilities, stealing things like credit cards and cash out of purses."

One trend that's easier to explain is the decrease in alcohol arrests, dropping from 113 in 2017 to 57 last year. Hedman says that the sale of beer in Ohio Stadium means students are curbing rowdy drinking before games.

The 2018 and 2019 Cleary Act reports also include incidents reported against longtime sports doctor Richard Strauss, who worked at the university decades ago and died in 2005. More than 1,500 incidents of rape and fondling by Strauss have been reported in the last two years.