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US Dept. of Education fines Baylor more than $461,000 for Clery Act violations

The U.S. Department of Education has fined Baylor more than $460,000 for violations of the Clery Act regarding campus crime reporting.  (Baylor University photo/file)
The U.S. Department of Education has fined Baylor more than $460,000 for violations of the Clery Act regarding campus crime reporting. (Baylor University photo/file)(KWTX)
Published: Oct. 9, 2020 at 2:05 PM CDT
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WACO, Texas (KWTX) - The U.S. Department of Education has fined Baylor University $461,656 for violations of the Clery Act regarding campus crime reporting between 2011 and 2016.

The university doesn’t plan to contest the fine, Baylor President Linda Livingstone said in an email to students and faculty.

“These violations include lack of administrative capability, failure to report accurate crime statistics in the annual safety and security report, failure to comply with timely warning issuance and policy provisions, and failure to maintain an accurate, complete daily crime log,” she said.

“Additionally, we believe that the Department of Education took note of the University’s significant corrective actions made in the administration of and compliance with the Clery Act, and found them acceptable,” she said.

“In contrast to other institutions that have also been found in violation of the Clery Act enforcement actions, Baylor will not be required to undergo ongoing Clery compliance reviews related to this inquiry by the Department of Education.”

The Department of Education announced in March 2017 in the aftermath of the sexual assault scandal that engulfed the school’s football program it was opening an investigation focused on the school’s crime reporting process and would review Baylor’s annual Fire Safety and Security report, which include the university’s drug and alcohol abuse prevention program.

On May 26, 2016, the Baylor Board of Regents released its 13-page findings of fact following a months-long investigation by Pepper Hamilton law firm into allegations of widespread sexual assaults by black athletes on the Baylor football team and fired head football coach Art Briles, Director of Football Operations Colin Shillinglaw and Tom Hill, who had worked for the university for 28 years and at one time oversaw seven sports, including volleyball.

Regents reassigned then president Ken Starr, who later resigned and suspended athletic director Ian McCaw who’s now athletic director at Liberty University.

A little publicized, 2014 consultant study obtained by KWTX in 2018, the Margolis Healy, Title IX Review and Clery Act Compliance Assessment, identified several Clery Act compliance issues “that require immediate attention and, in some cases, may require additional resources.”

Baylor’s Clery report showed no sexual assaults on campus in 2011, two rapes in 2012 on campus, six cases in 2013 on campus, five reported rapes on campus in 2014 and 23 rapes in 2015, an increase of 360 percent.

Dr. David Garland, who succeeded Starr as interim president, in a letter to faculty in June 2016, said the school acknowledged and took responsibility for its failures and had already taken steps to ensure the school was in compliance Title IX, the Clery Act, and the Violence Against Women act, which toughened provisions to hold offenders accountable and created programs to help the victims of domestic violence.

The Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act or Clery Act, which was signed into law in 1990, requires campuses to share information about campus crime and efforts to improve campus safety.

Copyright 2020 KWTX. All rights reserved.

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