Twenty-nine rapes were left off of Texas State’s previous years’ Annual Security Report, formerly known as “Campus Watch.”
Texas State released the latest version of its Annual Security Report of Clery-reportable data Monday, Oct. 1, which detailed numerous instances of gross underreporting of crime statistics on campus between 2016-2018.
The statistics associated with the Annual Security Report occurred within Texas State’s reportable area of crimes that occurred on campus, in off-campus buildings or property owned or controlled by Texas State from 2016-2018.
Additionally, the report includes crimes that may have happened on public property within or adjacent to campus and accessible from the university.
The report, previously known as “Campus Watch,” and now known as the Annual Security Report, was made available to all current students, faculty and staff at 5:35 p.m. on Sept. 30.
Annually, institutions participating in the Federal Student Aid program must disclose campus security policy and crime statistics, a process outlined in the Clery Act.
The peer review team from the International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators, who were on campus Aug. 12-15, 2018, indicated the first concern for Clery compliance at Texas State.
According to university officials the new leadership and administrators immediately began to address deficiencies in the reporting of Clery offenses.
The revision of previous numbers from 2016 and 2017 is due, in part, to Texas State staff members revisiting police reports from the aforementioned two years and ensuring reports are classified correctly as a part of a reported “university-wide process.” According to a university press release, this process will work to ensure accurate crime statistics moving forward.
“All recommendations in the IACLEA peer review report regarding Clery have been addressed under the leadership of UPD Chief Laurie Clouse, who was hired in February 2019,” the press release states.
Additionally, Clouse sent out emails to identified Campus Security Authorities including student organization advisors, Greek advisors and others identified by position such as coaches and residential assistants.
Clouse oversaw the correction of deficiencies and, according to Vice President of Finance and Support Services Eric Algoe, was hired specifically because of her familiarity with the Clery report. In her email sent out at 6:33 p.m. Sept. 11, Clouse detailed instructions to 925 CSAs to ensure accuracy across the university.
Clouse reported to The University Star that only 372 CSA letters went out during the 2018 Clery reportable time frame which would have impacted data associated with the 2017, 2016 and 2015 numbers. This marks a near 148% increase in CSA presence on campus.
“The peer review made it clear the first step in making this right was to hire a chief of police that had experience in higher education and experience with doing Clery reports at other institutions that were fully compliant,” Algoe said.
Texas State administration started to receive technical assistance from the Department of Education May 14, 2019. The technical assistance was reported to address formatting issues within the report itself. Algoe said administrators became aware of the discrepancies in the data, but the report itself was not up to standard.
“The numbers being wrong is probably the most important, but there are other shortcomings of the Clery process as well,” Algoe said. “We were not separately reporting Round Rock data from San Marcos data, we didn’t have enough campus security officials identified and then there were just a lot of formatting issues.”
Reformatting Texas State’s Clery reporting process and the report itself was one process. However, the DOE would issue an additional task for Texas State staffers Aug. 21, according to Texas State officials. This is when employees were asked to revise and update the numbers associated in previous years’ reports.
Article 8 of the IACLEA Peer Review Results for Texas State University states the department is “seriously deficient in emergency management planning, operations, and response and in overall compliance.”