Report shows slight increase in crime reported at Iowa State

Katherine Klingseis

Crime statistics show a slight increase in offenses, charges and arrests at Iowa State this school year compared to last.

The quarterly statistics report, which will be presented at the Iowa Board of Regents’ meeting Thursday, show the number of offenses, charges and arrests that occurred at Iowa State, the University of Iowa and the University of Northern Iowa during the third quarter of the 2011 school year.

Marcia Brunson, the Board’s policy and operations officer, said the Board requested the Regents universities to provide quarterly crime statistics a few years ago.

“We already had an annual security report and a regent asked about crime statistics,” Brunson said. “There was nothing that preempted it. It just came up as part of a discussion.”

According to the report, 593 offenses or incidents were reported in the third quarter of this school year. This is an increased of 35 from the number reported in the second quarter.

Lt. Elliott Florer of ISU Police said offenses or incidents occur whenever an officer responds to a call.

Florer said ISU Police has recently received an increased number of students in residence halls calling about smelling the scent of marijuana.

“Since the weather is getting colder, people in residence halls are calling more often about smelling marijuana,” Florer said.

The report also compares this year’s numbers with last year’s numbers. For the third quarter, the number of offenses or incidents, charges and arrests all increased from the number reported in the third quarter last year.

Florer said one reason for the increases is because enrollment at Iowa State has increased. He also said ISU Police has more officers.

“We’ve had some people leave or retire, but we are now getting back to having a full staff,” Florer said.

Florer explained that increases in incidents, charges and arrests do not mean there has been more crime in Ames. He said it just means that more people are reporting criminal activity to ISU Police.

“We are really focusing on our outreach efforts,” Florer said. “We want people to feel comfortable calling us.”

Brunson said the statistics vary from quarter to quarter and the Board does not take action in response to increases or decreases.

“They usually don’t even comment on them,” Brunson said.