Annual Security and Fire Safety Report reveals lowered crime statistics following pandemic

Riley King and Bridgette Simpson, Contributing Writer and News Editor

Anthony Morgan sent out this year’s Annual Security & Fire Safety Report on Sept. 30, 2022. 

Published statistics show a drop in violations have occurred campus wide since the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Annual Security & Fire Report includes instructions on reporting campus crimes, emergency response procedures, daily crime logs, weapons on campus and crime protection programs. The report also includes campus crime and fire statistics from 2019-2021. 

Morgan has served Bucknell as its Chief of Public Safety since Feb. 1. He succeeded Steve Barilar, who worked at Bucknell for nearly 11 years. 

It is intended to serve as another way to synthesize the prevalence of various denominations of crimes and other relevant information. 

Reported cases of burglary at Bucknell have decreased — with four cases in 2019, three cases in 2020 and only one case in 2021. 

Liquor law arrests have also decreased with 18 in 2019, 15 in 2020 and nine in 2021. However, liquor law violations have increased dramatically with 215 in 2019, 266 in 2020 and 368 in 2021. 

Drug law violations have decreased but stayed relatively steady with 45 in 2019, 47 in 2020 and 33 in 2021. On the contrary, in each year of 2019, 2020 and 2021, only one drug law arrest took place, all of which occurred in residential facilities. Arson was documented on campus once in 2019, once in 2020, and not at all in 2021. 

Only one residential building fire inflicted damage of more than $100, which occurred in 2021. The fire was caused by cooking and incurred approximately $2,000 to the South Campus Apartments, Building Two. 

The report also includes the discrepancies between original claims and after correction for each year. The reports filed in 2020 had the largest discrepancies, especially as it pertained to liquor law violations, which was corrected by subtracting 143 offenses from the original number. The drug violations filed were also corrected and subtracted 16 from the original total, while stalking corrections added three incidents and rape also had incidents added. 

In the past three years, Bucknell has had zero reported cases of domestic violence but stalking has increased with eight reported offenses in 2021. Dating violence offenses are less prevalent than stalking incidences, and saw a decrease in prevalence from 2019 to 2021, with four, two and one offense each year, respectively. 

11 cases of rape were documented in 2019, three cases were documented in 2020, and 12 cases, 11 of which took place in residential facilities, were observed in 2021. Similarly, four cases of fondling were reported in 2019 and seven cases in 2021, with zero in 2020. 

It’s worth noting that all trends observed, apart from drug law violations, liquor law violations, and stalking, have decreased in frequency year to year after the COVID-19 pandemic began in 2020. Furthermore, the frequency of drug law violations decreased sharply from 2020 to 2021 as aforementioned. 

The report then goes on to outline hate crimes at Bucknell from 2019-2021. According to the report, there has been one case of assault and one case of harassment, and both occurred in 2021. 

Finally, the report summarizes fire trends and fire safety measures in residential housing. From 2019 to 2021, there have been five fires in residential buildings totaling less than $2,000 in damages, and all of these fires were a result of cooking.

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