Stanford releases 2019 Safety, Security and Fire Report

Stanford has released its 2019 Safety, Security & Fire Report, an annual publication that promotes personal safety and crime prevention on campus, and provides statistics about specified crimes that were reported during the 2018 calendar year.

The report covers crimes that occurred on the main campus and other locations used by students that are immediately adjacent to the campus, including the two Stanford hospitals and the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory.

The Stanford University Department of Public Safety (Stanford DPS) publishes the report every year in compliance with a federal law, known as the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act.

Stanford DPS provides safety, security, law enforcement, crime prevention and emergency response services for the university’s main campus.

Under the law, Stanford DPS compiles statistics on specific crimes: sexual offenses; aggravated assaults, building burglaries and motor vehicle thefts; violations of liquor, drug and weapons laws; and hate crimes motivated by prejudice based on race, religion, disability, sexual orientation or other grounds.

The report provides statistics on crimes that involve students, faculty and staff, as well as crimes that involve visitors and people who were on campus for a camp or conference.

In addition to 2018 statistics, the new report provides statistics for 2016 and 2017. View the report here.

Three reports address sexual misconduct

The Safety, Security & Fire Report is one of three reports the university will release this fall addressing issues related to prohibited sexual conduct.

Each of the three reports covers a different time period and reflects data collected by distinct entities. The data collected in compliance with the Clery Act is based upon the location where the incident occurred. The data collected in the other two reports is based upon one’s affiliation with the university. The reports are:

  • The 2019 Safety, Security & Fire Report covers incidents reported in the 2018 calendar year to university staff who are required to share such reports with Stanford DPS or the Clery Compliance Office.
  • The 2019 AAU (Association of American Universities) Survey on Sexual Assault and Harassment covers incidents reported by students since they enrolled at Stanford. The AAU survey was conducted last spring at 33 colleges and universities, including Stanford. Detailed information on Stanford’s participation in the survey can be viewed here. The AAU plans to release its report in October.
  • The 2018-19 Stanford Title IX/Sexual Harassment Report covers incidents reported by students, faculty and staff during the academic year – Sept. 1, 2018, through Aug. 31, 2019. The data is compiled from reports from Sanford’s Title IX Office and Sexual Harassment Policy Office. The report also outlines the ways in which Stanford responded to reported concerns of sexual harassment, sexual violence and other unwanted sexual conduct on campus, and in all programs and activities connected to Stanford. The university will release the report in November.

2019 Safety, Security & Fire Report

According to the 2019 Safety, Security & Fire Report, the total number of sexual offenses reported to university officials last year was 52, compared with 42 in 2017 and 46 in 2016. The total number of sex offenses for 2018 included 32 rapes and 20 fondling incidents.

“The vast majority of sexual offense cases counted under the Clery Act were reported to the institution via Stanford’s Title IX Office and others who were legally required to report these crimes pursuant to the Clery Act,” said Laura Wilson, director of Stanford DPS.

“Very few of the 52 incidents were reported directly to the police for the purpose of having a criminal investigation conducted. We continue to encourage individuals who have experienced unwanted sexual activity to report the incidents both to Stanford DPS and to the Title IX Office, and also to seek out professional resources for help, including the university’s Confidential Support Team.”

In 2018, 16 reports of relationship violence were reported to the Clery Compliance Office, which is part of Stanford DPS, compared with seven in 2017 and nine in 2016.

Last year, the Clery Compliance Office received reports of 13 aggravated assaults, compared with one in 2017 and four in 2016. One case in 2018 – a reported drugging at a campus party – accounted for seven of the 13 aggravated assaults reported last year. (Under federal law, crimes against persons are generally counted by the number of victims.)

In 2018, 46 building burglaries were reported, compared with 65 in 2017 and 56 in 2016.

According to the report, the university received 35 reports of stolen motor vehicles in 2018, compared with 32 in 2017 and 35 in 2016. In each year, missing golf carts accounted for most of the stolen vehicles.

Acts of intolerance

Last year, four hate crimes were reported to the Clery Compliance Office, compared with 22 in 2017 and eight in 2016.

The hate crime statistics for 2018 include two thefts related to religion, including the theft of flags from a traditionally Jewish fraternity and a mezuzah from a campus residence. (A mezuzah is a small case containing an inscribed scroll placed on the doorpost signifying that those who enter and leave the home desire to live in accordance with Jewish tradition.)

Last year’s hate crimes also included two acts of vandalism, including one related to national origin (a poster in a residence hall) and another related to disability (the defacement of a disability parking sign).

“Hate incidents have a real and significant impact on our community,” Wilson said. “Stanford DPS encourages individuals to report these incidents to our office and to Student Affairs, which has established an Acts of Intolerance Protocol so that the university understands what is occurring and can endeavor to address and mitigate the impact these incidents have on our community.”

How to respond to active threats

Most of the 116-page report, which can be viewed online or in print, is devoted to promoting personal safety and crime prevention on campus.

Given the concerns many have expressed about mass shootings across the country, Wilson wanted to draw particular attention to the department’s Active Threat video, which provides invaluable information on how to respond to an active shooter.

“In addition to thinking about how you might react if ever confronted with an imminent threat to your safety – be that someone armed with a firearm, a knife or even a vehicle, I want to stress how important it is that community members also think about and be willing to engage in preventive actions,” she said.

“A high percentage of persons who commit these violent acts planned these crimes in advance. Prevention begins by paying attention to what is going on around you and reporting concerning behavior to persons who can assess the behavior and develop an appropriate response plan.”

More information about violence prevention can be found in the report and on the Stanford DPS website, including an interactive infographic, Threat & Violence Prevention.

Vince Bergado, the Clery compliance coordinator at Stanford, said the office has added an online Incident Report Form, designed to assist campus security authorities (CSAs) in gathering information and reporting campus crimes for compliance purposes. The form can be found under the new Clery CSA tab on the Stanford DPS home page. (Under the Clery Act, a CSA is any university official who has significant responsibilities for students and campus activities in addition to police and security personnel.) This form is specifically for CSAs to report incidents for inclusion in campus crime statistics and should not be used to report crimes to the police when a criminal investigation is the desired or expected outcome.

The Clery CSA tab also includes a new Clery Travel Form, which is required for reporting travel locations as well as crimes that occur when students stay off campus more than two nights under a Stanford program, such as the hotel where a varsity sports team stays for away games, or the place students stay during short-term overseas seminars.

“Our goal is transparency,” said Bergado, who compiles information for the report and conducts campus training sessions about Clery Act requirements. “We’re working hard to accurately represent what’s happening on campus to provide awareness for members of the community.”

An electronic version of the report is available on the Stanford Department of Public Safety website. Print copies may be requested by phone, (650) 723-9633; by email,; or by U.S. Mail, Attn: Crime Statistics, Stanford Department of Public Safety, 711 Serra Street, Stanford, CA 94035-7240.