Columbia College reported, as do many other institutions, that there were no incidents of safety or crime involving students.
Our crime statistics come from the U.S. Department of Education's Campus Safety and Security data. The four types of crimes we will be analyzing are violence against women, arrests for major crimes, arrests for possession, and disciplinary actions.
Murder, rape, robbery, aggravated assault, and arson are the types of things included in the arrests for major crimes category. The violence against women grouping includes things such as domestic violence, date rape, and stalking. The arrests for possession classification deals with things such as weapons possession, alcohol violations, and drug violations. The disciplinary actions category involves possession of weapons, alcohol violations, and drug violations in the cases where no arrest occurred but some action was taken.
It is not unusual for institutions to report that no incidents occurred in some of these categories. In fact, 56% of the schools we cover reported no arrests for major crimes, 67% reported no violence against women, 70% reported no arrests for possession, and 68% reported no disciplinary actions.
Zero incidents of reported crime may be nice to see, but it does not necessarily mean the school is safer, as it could indicate lax reporting. Likewise, a high number of incidents may just mean that the school is stricter about law enforcement and reporting.
More about our data sources and methodologies.