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TBI: Crime on Tennessee college campuses increased overall in 2019

Crime reported by Tennessee universities was up 3.6% overall from 2018. However, the TBI said campus crime levels were still lower than they were in 2016.
Credit: TBI

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation released its 2019 Crime on Campus report, showing crime increased on many state college campuses in the past year.

Crime reported by Tennessee's colleges and universities was up by 3.6% overall from 2018 to 2019.However, the TBI said campus crime levels were still much lower since 2016 -- down by 12.3% in the past three years. 

“This report will hopefully assist law enforcement, institution administrators, and government officials in planning their efforts in the fight against crime and create an awareness that crime exists as a threat in our communities,” said TBI Director David Rausch. “I wish to express my appreciation to all institutions of higher learning that consistently support a unified crime reporting system in Tennessee.”

The report breaks down crimes based on Group A offenses such as rape and aggravated assault, and Group B offenses such as liquor law violations and trespassing.

Assault offenses were up by 26.1% in 2019.

Non-consensual sexual offences on campuses were down by 20% from last year. Larceny and theft offenses decreased, but still made up 26.7% of all reported offenses on campuses in 2019.

The report also breaks down each university's reported crime levels. The University of Tennessee Knoxville campus saw fewer Group A crimes overall in 2019 compared to 2018.

Forcible sexual offenses increased by 1 compared to 2018. The number of assault offenses also increased by 13.

However, larceny and theft offense at UTK were down significantly 2018 -- down by 75 cases in 2019. Similarly, drug violations were down by 41.

One area where UT saw a significant increase in crime was liquor law violations. Those include underage drinking, illegal sales, and open container violations. In 2018, UT reported just 28 violations. In 2019, that number more than doubled to 70. However, DUIs and public intoxication violations were cut nearly in half in 2019.