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Harvard Campus Crime Increased in 2022 Following 10-Year Low in 2021

By Yusuf S. Mian, Crimson Staff Writer

Crime on Harvard’s campus climbed by 46 percent in 2022 from the 10-year low reported in 2021, according to a report released by the Harvard University Police Department Sunday.

The annual report, which discloses data as required by federal law under the Clery Act, shows 208 crimes reported in 2022. This figure is up from 142 reported crimes in 2021 and 179 reported crimes in 2020. Still, other than in 2020 and 2021, there were fewer reported crimes in 2022 than every year since at least 2011.

Despite the overall increase in crime from 2022 to 2021, the data shows a decrease in the number of reported rapes — from 22 to 16 — and domestic violence — from 7 to 5. Burglary rose substantially from 17 to 37 between 2021 and 2022, and motor vehicle theft rose from 37 to 81.

In 2022, there were just four arrests made by HUPD officers: three in Cambridge and one in Longwood, matching the same total as 2021. Two of the arrests were for drug law violations, one was for a weapons violation, and the last was a liquor law violation.

The report also showed five hate crimes, including four assaults “motivated by race” and one assault “motivated by sexual orientation” in 2022. This number is a slight increase from 2021, which saw four reported hate crimes.

Under the Clery Act, all colleges and universities that receive federal funding are mandated to disclose certain crimes in an annual security report.

HUPD released the annual report through an email to affiliates along with an annual fire safety report published by the Harvard University Environmental Health and Safety Department. The fire safety report indicated that there were no fires in Harvard buildings in 2022. There was one fire in a Harvard building in 2021.

Harvard also conducted a total of 73 fire drills in the fall on its Allston, Cambridge, and Longwood campuses, up from 68 in 2021.

The report, which contains general public safety information and a note from HUPD Chief Victor A. Clay, includes information collected from the Massachusetts State Police as well as the Boston, Cambridge, and Somerville police departments.

The report shows crime statistics for the department’s first full year under Clay, who took over as police chief in July 2021.

Clay wrote that despite the low crime rate on Harvard’s campus, affiliates must remain vigilant against crime in Cambridge.

“It is important for students, faculty, staff, and visitors to remember that we must contend with many of the crime and safety issues that exist in any city,” Clay wrote in the report. “Preserving the safety and security of the University is the combined responsibility of the entire community.”

—Staff writer Yusuf S. Mian can be reached at Follow him on X @yusuf_mian2 or on Threads @yusuf_mian.

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