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Reportable Crimes

NOVA posts statistics for serious crimes reported to local police agencies and campus security authorities. The following considerations are used to assist in the classification and recording of serious crimes:

  • The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Handbook is used for all definitions of offenses, except for below
  • Beginning in 2013 Dating Violence, Domestic Violence, and Stalking the meaning given such terms in section 40002(a) of the Violence Against Women Act of 1994 (42 U.S.C. 13925(a))
  • Clery Act reporting DOES NOT require disclosure of all other sexual related offenses. ex. sexual harassment, voyeurism and incident exposure
  • Offenses are counted on the basis of calls for service, complaints and investigations.
  • Findings of courts, coroners, jury, prosecutorial decisions and student judicial boards are NOT a basis for counting Clery Act crimes.
  • The Clery Act does not require initiating an investigation or disclosing identifying information about the victim for the statistics to be included within this ASR.

Hierarchy Rule i

The reported crimes are cataloged utilizing the Hierarchy Rule which is when the offender/perpetrator commits multiple offenses in the same incident. When this occurs, the hierarchy rule is used when counting multiple offenses. The hierarchy rule requires that the most serious offense be counted when more than one offense was committed during a single incident. A single incident means that the offenses must be committed at the same time and place; and that the time interval and distance between the offenses were insignificant. Not all crimes committed in the same incident are counted with the statistics only the most serious per the hierarchy rule. The hierarchy rule does not apply to incidents of Arson, Hate Crimes, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, Stalking, or Weapons, Drug, and Alcohol Violations.  In addition, Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013 (VAWA) also made an exception to the hierarchy rule when a sexual assault and murder occur in the same incident both crimes will be statistically recorded for that years ASR.

It should be noted that the VAWA Act created some significant changes to the Clery Act statistical crime reporting requirements. Such changes included adding and tracking crimes related to Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, and Stalking which were not previously reported. As well there were some additional Hate Crimes classifications introduced which included National Origin Bias and Gender Identity Bias. Additionally, VAWA required changes to the tracking and cataloging of Sexual Assault Crimes. Previously under Clery, Forcible Sex Offenses (included Rape, Forcible Sodomy, Sexual Assault with an Object and Forcible Fondling) were based upon the National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS) definitions.  This requirement has been changed to use the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) Uniform Crime Report (UCR) definition of Rape which within its definition includes the crimes of Sodomy and Sexual Assault with an Object.  Therefore, Forcible Sexual Offenses category has been changed to Rape or Fondling and Non-Forcible Sexual Offenses has been changed to Incest and Statutory Rape with each of the statistics being individually reported.

Definitions of the crime categories are listed below:

  1. Murder and Non-Negligent Manslaughter
  2. Negligent Manslaughter
  3. Sex Offenses
  4. Robbery
  5. Aggravated Assault
  6. Burglary
  7. Motor Vehicle Theft
  8. Domestic Violence
  9. Dating Violence
  10. Stalking
  11. Arson
  12. Hate Crimes
  13. Liquor Law Violations
  14. Drug Law Violations
  15. Weapon Law Violations

Sources: FBI UCR Rape Reporting (May 2013); DOJ NIBRS Handbook (August 2000); DOJ Hate Crimes Manual (December 2012); DOE Clery Handbook (February 2011); FBI UCR Handbook (2004); D Stafford & Associates Reference Guide: Collecting; Classifying & Counting Clery Act Crime Data; and Clery Act Training Program Handout (2013).