IOWA CITY (AP) — The University of Iowa has seen a dramatic jump in the number of sexual assault warnings it has issued this school year.
Since August, university police have issued seven campus-wide warnings about reports of students being sexually assaulted on or near campus, the Iowa City Press-Citizen reported. That's six more than were issued during the same period a year earlier.
The warnings are issued as part of the university's compliance with the federal Clery Act, which requires colleges to keep and report statistics on crimes in and around campus.
The most recent warning came Monday after a student reported being sexually assaulted earlier in the day by an acquaintance at a residence hall.
It was the fourth time a student this academic year reported being victimized in a dorm.
The other warnings stemmed from similar occurrences at a fraternity house, a U of I parking lot and by a woman walking near campus.
University officials believe that the increase in warnings does not represent an increase in the number of sexual assaults on and around campus, but that more women are coming forward to report incidents.
“I think the story is we are doing our work, and the more we do our work well, the more reports we will receive,” said Monique DiCarlo, the U of I's sexual misconduct response coordinator.
The university established DiCarlo's office after two former football players allegedly assaulted a freshman athlete in a residence hall after a night of heavy drinking in 2007. The case spurred the university to revamp its policies on drinking and sexual assault.
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