Frequently Asked Questions
Frequently Asked Questions
A Campus Security Authority, or CSA, is defined by four different groups of individuals often found on college campuses. These groups are determined and defined by the Department of Education:
- Any individual(s) who have responsibility for campus security but who do not constitute as campus law enforcement (e.g., an individual who is responsible for monitoring the entrance into institutional property).
- Any individual or organization specified by an institution to which students and employees should report criminal offenses. These are individuals the university directs the campus community to for reporting criminal incidents in addition to police or security-related personnel.
- An official of an institution who has significant responsibility for student and campus activities, including, but not limited to, student housing, student discipline and campus judicial proceedings. An official is defined as any person who has the authority and the duty to take action or respond to particular issues on behalf of the institution.
- A campus security department, such as Florida Tech Department of Security, are considered CSAs. Any Clery incidents reported to Florida Tech Department of Security, even those not reported through a law enforcement report, are reportable under the Clery Act.
Under the Clery Act, CSAs are obligated to report Clery Act qualifying crimes which occurred on campus, in public areas bordering campus and in certain noncampus buildings owned or controlled (leased) by the university. The intent of including non-law enforcement personnel in the CSA role is to acknowledge that some community members and students may be more inclined to report incidents to other campus-affiliated individuals instead of the police or security.
CSAs are responsible for reporting allegations of Clery Act crimes that are reported to them in their capacity as a CSA. This means that CSAs are not responsible for investigating or reporting incidents that they overhear students talking about in a hallway conversation; that a classmate or student mentions during an in-class discussion; that a victim mentions during a speech, workshop, or any other form of group presentation; or that the CSA otherwise learns about in an indirect manner.
A campus security authority is not responsible for determining authoritatively whether a crime took place-that is the function of law enforcement or security personnel if the individual chooses to report the incident to police or campus security.
It's also not a CSA's responsibility to try and convince a victim to contact law enforcement or campus security if the victim chooses not to do so.
To qualify as reportable, a Clery Act crime must have occurred in one of the following locations:
On-campus property: Any building or property owned or controlled by the university within the same reasonably contiguous geographic area and used by the university in direct support of, or in a manner related to, the university's educational purpose, including buildings or property the location described herein that is owned by the university but controlled by another person and which is frequently used by students.
On-campus residential life buildings and Greek houses.
Non-campus property: Any non-campus property or building owned or controlled (leased} by the university that is frequently used by students and is not within the same reasonably contiguous geographic area of the institution.
Public Property: Any public property located immediately adjacent to, and accessible from campus, including public garages, thoroughfares, sidewalks, streets, lands, parks, and beaches.
For Safety Notices and Clery statistics, crimes are classified according to the regulations of the Clery Act, mandated by the Department of Education. Though state law may categorize an incident differently, Clery definitions and classifications are strictly followed when labeling an incident for Clery reporting purposes
For a list of Clery Act crimes and their definitions, please visit the Clery Crimes and Locations menu tab.
The term fondling is not a university term nor a state law term, but a Clery Act term. The Department of Education regulates the Clery Act, how it is practiced and strictly enforces its policies. In 2013, the Violence Against Women Act was signed and amended the Clery Act. It was at that time that the Department of Education changed the way universities classified certain crimes. Prior to 2014, sexual assaults were categorized by either forcible sex offenses or non-forcible sex offenses. In 2014, that mandate was changed and we are now required to categorize sexual assaults as rape, fondling, statutory rape, and incest.
Since the Clery Act is a federal law, it typically follows the Federal Bureau of Investigation's (FBI} Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) to define and classify crimes. Fondling is a term used in the FBI crime code so that is why the Clery Act uses that term. If the same assault was classified by local law enforcement it would be a sexual battery; however, the Clery Act does not use nor are universities allowed to use local crime code to categorize offenses when it comes to Clery Act regulations (ie; timely warnings, Clery crime statistics).
Fondling is defined as, the touching of private body parts of another person for the purpose of sexual gratification, forcibly and/or against that person's will; or not forcibly or against the person's will where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of his/her youth or because of his/her temporary or permanent mental or physical incapacity.
When a CSA receives crime information reportable under the Clery Act, they will submit a CSA report. CSAs simply report what they know. If a CSA is unsure if the incident is a Clery crime, if it happened on a Clery location, or if it was even a crime at all, they will still report the incident. The Clery office will decide the classification of the crime and how it should be categorized. The Clery office may contact the CSA for additional information if necessary. As always, people and their safety are our main concern, in addition to reporting, CSAs will assist the victim in obtaining help if needed such as medical, or counseling services.
A CSA is not responsible for determining authoritatively whether a crime took place-that is the function of law enforcement/security personnel. A CSA should not try to apprehend the alleged perpetrator of the crime. That too is the responsibility of law enforcement/security. It is also not a CSA's responsibility to try and convince a victim to contact law enforcement/security if the victim chooses not to do so.
Statistics are compiled by the Clery Compliance Officer. Data is collected from the Department of Security, Student Conduct, Campus Security Authorities, Melbourne Police Department, and other applicable law enforcement agencies for incidents that occurred on Florida Tech owned or controlled properties This information is published in the university's Annual Security and Fire Safety Report on or before October 1 annually.
A CSA report cannot be confidential, even if the person who reported the incident to the CSA requested that they keep the report confidential. However, crime statistics and safety notifications are anonymous and no personal identifiers are disclosed.
There are two forms of notifications. Emergency notifications, and timely warnings. The university is federally mandated to send these notifications when a Clery-reportable crime occurs on university owned or controlled property that is a serious or continuing threat to the campus community. The university supports this mandate and believes it's an important part of keeping the community safe. For more information on Clery mandated notifications, visit the Safety Notice page.
No. The University is federally mandated by the Clery Act, which is strictly enforced by the Department of Education, to notify you of these incidents through timely warning messages. Though we are federally mandated to send these to you, it is always your choice on whether or not you decide to read them.
The Clery Act does not mandate what information should be included in a Timely Warning Notice. However, Timely Warnings will usually include date the incident was reported, the date and a general time frame the incident occurred, location (typically a general location will be given when a sexual assault occurs in an on-campus residence hall to protect the identity of the victim), a brief description of the incident, and safety tips.
Names of the victim or suspect will generally be withheld to protect the identity of the victim. If the incident is reported through a CSA report, often times the name of the victim and/or suspect is not reported. If the incident was reported through a police report, names are not released due to the ongoing investigation.
The intent of a Timely Warning Notice is to inform members of the campus community of specific crimes so they may make informed decisions for their safety and the safety of others. The notification includes information that would promote safety and that would aid in the prevention of similar crimes.
Safety Notices (Emergency Notifications / Timely Warnings):
The Clery Act has specific requirements intended to keep the community informed about threats to health and safety in a manner that allows them to make informed decisions about their safety and the safety of others. Two different types of notifications are mandated for this reason:
- Emergency notifications: Reserved for incidents that are critical in nature and require immediate action. Emergency notifications will be sent in situations when there is an immediate threat to the health and safety of students or employees on the Florida Tech campus. Examples would be a building fire, a hazardous material spill or leak impacting a large area, a severe weather threat, or an active shooter on campus.
- Timely Warning Notices: Email messages to notify the campus community in a timely manner of specific crimes that occurred on Florida Tech campus. The purpose of a Timely Warning Notice is to offer safety tips and information to aid in the prevention of similar crimes. Examples would be a sexual assault, robbery, or an onset of continuous burglaries.
Clery crimes occurring on property owned or controlled by the university that pose a serious or continuing threat to the campus community are subject to notification.
In order for an incident to be subject for notification, all three of the following must be met:
- A (Clery Act) crime is reported to Campus Security either directly or indirectly through a report to a CSA or a local law enforcement authority
- The crime occurred within the University's Clery geography. (property owned or controlled by the University, or public property immediately adjacent to (touching) University-owned property)
- The Department of Security determines there is a continuing threat to the safety of Florida Tech students and employees
However, some notices may not be posted for incidents involving:
- an arrest of the perpetrator,
- a significant time delay in reporting, or
- other circumstance diminishing a serious or continuing threat
- The incident did not occur on the University's Clery geography
Notices are issued in a manner that is:
- Will aid in the prevention of other crimes
The intent of this directive is to establish guidelines for meeting the timely warning requirements of the Clery Act. The Department of Security is responsible for the investigation and reporting of crimes that occur on campus but may conduct joint investigations with law enforcement agencies for certain incidents.
The Department of Security provides access to a "daily crime log" during normal business hours, or the log can be viewed online. This log provides information of any crime, or alleged crime, reported to the Department of Security or a university CSA occurring on or near campus. There is no fee for access to the crime log the crime log. When a serious incident occurs that poses a threat to the campus community and a suspect has not been apprehended, the Department of Security may disseminate a "Safety Notice". The safety notice may be issued electronically, by flyer, or a combination of the two. The potential for continuing safety concerns will dictate the necessity of issuing the safety notice. Safety notices will generally be issued for serious crimes against persons, such as robbery, rape, or aggravated assaults. Nothing in this directive should be considered an absolute for when a safety notice will be issued or not issued. Each incident will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis for the appropriateness of issuing a safety notice by the Director of Security or his/her designee.
The goal of the safety notices is to provide information to the campus community to aid in developing their risk reduction strategies. The notifications are supplemented by providing information on a regular basis to area media. However, the release of this information to the media does not mean that this information is always provided by these venues. The department will continue to work with various groups in the campus community to disseminate this information in a timely manner.
Emergency Notifications will be issued for serious incidents that may require immediate action for safety. Examples of incidents when an Emergency Notification may be issued are: a person with a gun or a tornado warning impacting the campus community. Emergency Notifications differ from Timely Warning Notices. Emergency Notifications are reserved for incidents that are critical in nature, may require immediate action for your safety, and are issued immediately after verification of an incident. Timely Warning Notices are general notifications to help you develop risk reduction strategies and are sent in a timely but not necessarily immediate manner.