Campus Safety releases annual report

Biola’s campus experienced lower crime rates in 2009, but Campus Safety is continuing to be proactive with their strategies.



Biola has had fewer crimes on campus in the last three years, according to the annual “Security & Fire Safety Report.” Campus Safety provides many services to students to ensure community safety. KATIE JURANEK/The Chimes

Alethia Selby, Writer

Campus Safety released its annual “Security & Fire Safety Report” to the public at the end of last month, reporting lower crime rates in the last three years and giving regulations on how crime and damages can be prevented.

According to the report, the number of thefts committed within 2009 was lower in comparison to 2007 and 2008. There were no reported robberies or burglaries on campus in 2009, whereas in 2008, there were five reports of burglary and one reported robbery. There has only been one illegal weapons possession arrest in the last three years and one drug law violation arrest. John Ojeisekhoba, chief of Campus Safety, added that there have been 300 contacts with suspicious persons in the last year.

“This year has been better than last year,” Ojeisekhoba said.

Biola’s diligence keeps campus safer than similar schools

Biola’s campus has remarkably lower crime statistics than other campuses in Southern California. The difference is due to officers and cadets who patrol the campus on a constant basis, Ojeisekhoba said. Campus Safety has developed new strategies to catch suspicious people before any sort of criminal act actually takes place.

“How do you develop a new strategy? You think like a criminal,” Ojeisekhoba said.
Campus Safety’s main purpose is to ensure a safe environment on campus, Ojeisekhoba said. If a suspicious person enters the campus, Campus Safety finds out what the person’s affiliation is with Biola and whether the person has a legitimate reason to be on campus.

“We’re aggressive, and we’re really not sorry for that,” Ojeisekhoba said. “Our job is to ensure safety.”

Campus safety being proactive with their strategies

Biola is no stranger to crime, but Ojeisekhoba said Campus Safety has developed new ways to ensure the campus is as safe as it possibly can be, not only through new strategies to combat theft, but also through fostering awareness. Campus Safety provides the opportunity for female students to prepare for potential danger through training that teaches them how to handle threatening situations. Campus Safety offers the Rape Aggression Defense System (RADS), which is a PE class for women only. Literature on how to avoid threatening situations is also offered.

Although there have not been any serious incidents in recent years, there are sex offenders in the La Mirada area. According to Megan’s Law, a website that tracks convicted sex offenders, La Mirada has 34 convicted offenders within its city limits, one of whom lives one street over from Biola’s campus.

Over the past five years, there have been no offenses that have taken place on Biola’s campus, but Ojeisekhoba noted that about 18 months ago there was an individual who befriended female students while they were off campus, and then try to harass one student sexually. According to Ojeisekhoba, this individual has not been seen recently.
Ojeisekhoba suggested numerous ways for women to protect themselves from the danger of sex offenders, such as avoiding isolation, being aware of one’s surroundings, and even dressing modestly.

“Biola is a very, very safe place,” Ojeisekhoba said. “It is a combination of what we do and the city that we are within.”

Students remain careful on campus

Many students do feel safe while on campus, but said they are wary when they walk around it at night.

Freshman Leah Pak is one such student.

“I’m from Stockton, and this is nothing compared to Stockton,” Pak said. “But do I feel safe? I don’t know if its personal, but I don’t feel safe when it’s dark. The gate by Hart freaks me out too, because it doesn’t seem guarded.”

Sophomore Kari Apodaca said she finds Biola’s campus to be similar to her hometown. “My hometown is safe, so I’m used to safety,” Apodaca said. “It’s nice to be at a school that is safe.”

Sophomore Jenny Ezaki also said she feels safe on Biola’s campus, no matter what time of day it is. “I feel safe on Biola’s campus, but I’m definitely more wary of walking off campus by myself,” Ezaki said.

0 0 votes
Article Rating