The purpose of this directive is to provide clear guidelines for the issuance of Timely Warnings in accordance with the Jeanne Clery Act (Clery Act).
St. Mary’s College of Maryland may issue a Timely Warning to the College community whenever a report of a Clery reportable crime or other serious crime is reported to the Office of Public Safety or a Campus Security Authority if the incident presents a serious or ongoing threat. The Office of Public Safety is responsible for writing the content of the Timely Warning Notice and distributing it to the campus community.
Timely Warning: The Clery Act requires all colleges and universities to alert the campus community to certain crimes that may represent an ongoing threat to the safety of students or employees in a manner that is timely and will aid in the prevention of similar crimes.
Clery Reportable Crimes: Crimes that are reported to Campus Security Authorities and are committed on college reportable geography. Clery reportable crimes are:
• Criminal Homicide, including Murder, Non-negligent Manslaughter and Manslaughter by Negligence; Sexual Assault, including Rape, Fondling, Incest and Statutory Rape; Robbery; Aggravated Assault; Burglary; Motor Vehicle Theft; and Arson.
• Hate Crimes include any of the above mentioned criminal offenses and any incidents of Larceny-Theft, Simple Assault, Intimidation, or Destruction/Damage/Vandalism of Property that were motivated by bias.
• Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) Offenses include incidents of Domestic Violence, Dating Violence and Stalking; and
• Arrests and Referrals for Weapons Law, Liquor Law and Drug Law violations.
Other Serious Crime: The College, in its discretion, may issue timely warnings for other crimes it deems pose an ongoing threat to the safety of student or employees, regardless of whether it is a Clery Reportable Crime.
Campus Security Authority: A Clery Act specific term that encompasses four groups of individuals and organizations associated with an institution:
• A campus police department or a campus security department.
• Any individual or individuals who have responsibility for campus security but who do not constitute a campus police department or a campus security department.
• Any individual or organization specified in an institution’s statement of campus security policy as an individual or organization to which students and employees should report criminal offenses.
• An official of an institution who has significant responsibility for student and campus activities.
I. Decision to Issue
a. All decisions on whether or not a Timely Warning is issued shall be made on a case-by-case basis, considering the facts surrounding a crime including:
i. The nature of the crime.
ii. The continuing danger or threat to the campus community.
iii. The amount of time that has elapsed between the occurrence and report.
iv. Whether the identity of the offender(s) is known.
v. The possible risk of compromising law enforcement efforts.
vi. The decision shall be made by the Director of Public Safety or his/her designee.
b. A Timely Warning will be issued as soon as pertinent information is available and within a reasonable amount of time.
II. Determining the Content of the Timely Warning
a. The content of the timely warning is intended to enable members of the campus community to protect themselves, and may include, but will not necessarily be limited to:
i. A succinct statement of the incident including the date, time, general location and nature of the reported crime(s);
ii. Possible connection to previous incidents;
iii. A physical description of the suspect(s);
iv. A photo or composite drawing of the suspect(s);
v. Other relevant and important information about the crime(s);
vi. Actions taken by the Office of Public Safety and/or law enforcement officials in response to the crime(s);
vii. Information on crime prevention, personal safety or other community safety resources; and
viii. How to contact the Office of Public Safety regarding the crime(s).
III. Dissemination of Timely Warnings
a. The following methods shall be utilized to distribute Timely Warnings
i. Official College email
ii. Flyers posted in buildings
iii. Public Safety Website
b. The College will notify the larger community when necessary through the local media outlets working with the College Office of Advancement and local public safety agencies.