Campus Crime Stats - Can You Compare?

- LITTLE ROCK, AR - Every university that accepts financial aid must submit annual crime numbers. But do the statistics tell the whole story?

The University of Arkansas Little Rock deals with a crime perception, even if the number of incidents reported on campus don't reflect a similar reality.

UALR Police director Ed Smith says it's a reputation he's worked to combat since he took the job in March 2013.

"It's perception. And we understand that perception is reality," Smith says.

The largely commuter university in Little Rock just gained its first ever police substation on campus last fall.

Smith says he also added a bike patrol to allow officers to have a more visible presence on the pedestrian friendly campus.

"Events are going to occur, no matter what," Smith says.  "But when you look at the frequency they occur, that's where you really have to be concerned."

The Clery Report provides an exhaustive annual record of crimes recorded both on and off-campus as well as crimes in student housing facilities.

Smith says he uses the data to help him analyze what trends may be occurring on his campus.  But he says looking at other universities stats isn't an "apples to apples" comparison.

"I think the biggest mistake is for people to try and compare," Smith says.  "And I know its human nature, we always want to compare, how are we doing versus what someone else is doing."

If you want to see how your college campus is doing, click here.

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