Record Fine Levied for Clery Act Violations
January 8, 2008
In late December, the Department of Education announced a record $357,500 fine for violations of its campus crime reporting regulations. The action followed an investigation triggered by the murder of a student in a dormitory at a midwestern university. While the immediate concern was the failure of the institution to issue a timely warning to the campus community, ED found a number of other violations.
- Failure to issue a timely warning in connection with the student's murder.
- Lack of administrative capability based on other violations, concerns about the institution's response to the loss of a set of master keys, and failure to adequately train personnel to comply with the Clery Act requirements.
- Lack of a timely warning policy as part of the institution's annual security report.
- Failure to properly disclose campus crime statistics, including reporting some offenses on a school-year rather than a calendar-year basis.
- Failure to include adequate policy statements in the annual security report--specifically information about how statistics are compiled and certain required statements.
- Failure to collect and report statistics on public property and non-campus buildings, due to lack of adequate procedures to obtain data from local police.
- Failure to properly maintain a campus crime log, for not appropriately updating entries pertaining to the on-campus murder in a timely fashion.
While the maximum fine per violation was $27,500, in some cases this was levied for each of the three years under review.
The Clery Act (also known as the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act) is quite complicated. NACUBO urges members to periodically review the provisions and assess compliance. The following resources may be useful:
- NACUBO teamed up with the International Association of College Law Enforcement Administrators (IACLEA) to produce two webcasts in 2004. The content remains relevant since Clery Act regulations have not changed. These 100-minute programs are now available on the NACUBO Web site free of charge to members.
- ED published a comprehensive Handbook for Campus Crime Reporting. A link to this lengthy document, and a number of other helpful resources, is provided on ED's Campus Security page.
NACUBO Contact: Anne Gross, vice president, regulatory affairs, 202.861.2544
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