The Office of Safety and Security released its 2022 Clery Report—covering campus instances of crime, fire, and alcohol and illegal drug infractions—in an email to the campus community yesterday.
This year, the Clery Report changed its classification of what counts as a drug law violation to reflect Maine’s decriminalization of marijuana. After informal consultation with the U.S. Department of Education, the College is no longer reporting violations of federal drug laws for substances decriminalized in Maine.
“As of January 01, 2022, the College’s ‘Drug Law Violations’ statistics no longer include marijuana offenses that have been decriminalized under Maine’s Cannabis Legalization Act … and the Maine Medical Use of Cannabis Act,” Executive Director of Safety and Security Randy Nichols wrote in his email to the campus community yesterday.
The drug law violation statistics from the 2022 Clery Report are the first to be collected under this new policy. There were two drug law violations resulting in judicial action in 2022, compared to five violations in 2021 and 22 violations in 2020.
Though marijuana offenses no longer result in judicial referral, possession and consumption of marijuana is still prohibited by the College in the Code of Community Standards and could result in disciplinary action from the Office of the Dean of Students.
There was an uptick in burglary and theft in non-residential areas of campus last year; in 2022, there were two burglaries and one motor vehicle theft on campus, whereas neither instances were reported in 2021 or 2020. Bowdoin’s campus also fully reopened to the public in August 2022 when former President Clayton Rose announced relaxed Covid-19 policies, one possible explanation for this trend. Prior to this, the campus had been closed to the public since Covid-related policies were first put in place in March 2020.
Liquor law violations resulting in judicial referral on campus decreased to 61 violations in 2022 from 80 violations in 2021 and 107 violations in 2020.
The report emphasized that crime is less prevalent on Bowdoin’s campus than on many others, but that students should take necessary measures to remain safe.
“Bowdoin College is a safe campus, Brunswick is a safe town, and Maine is a safe state,” Nichols wrote in the report.