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MSU ranked most dangerous campus in country on Crime Watch Daily, but fourth considering per capita rates

September 8, 2015


MSU was ranked the most dangerous campus in the country by crimewatchdaily.com, citing statistics from the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Postsecondary Education.

The data, from 2013, cited cases of 4 aggravated assaults, 62 motor vehicle thefts, 27 forcible sexual assaults, 120 burglaries, nine cases of arson and 10 robberies.

There were no murders on campus in that time period with only one of the top ten schools reporting one: The University of California, Berkley.

According to Department of Education reports, MSU's per capita crime rate is the highest in the state at 470 per 100,000 in comparison to the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor's which has the third largest per capita rate in the state at 155 per 100,000.

Taking into account only universities with enrollment above 20,000 students, MSU ranks fourth in per capita crime rates in the country.

A cautionary note is posed on the Office of Postsecondary Education's website, saying "the crime statistics found on this website represent alleged criminal offenses reported to campus security authorities and/or local law enforcement agencies. Therefore, the data collected do not necessarily reflect prosecutions or convictions for crimes."

Crimes are alleged, not prosecuted.

Since the data is only available before 2013, there is no knowledge that crime has been increasing since then for the freshmen and sophomore classes. However, the increase from 2011 and 2012 to 2013 is stark.

The number of motor vehicle thefts jumped from 14 in 2012 to 62 in 2013 and burglaries jumped from 77 in 2012 to 120 in 2013. Robberies too increased from just 3 in 2012 to 10 in 2013 and forcible sexual assaults increased from 15 in 2012 to 23 in 2013.

Aggravated assaults actually went down from 10 in 2011 to 7 in 2012 to 4 in 2013.

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