Crime Prevention

Bradley University’s crime prevention program is designed to inform and help members of the university community to minimize their potential to be a victim of crime. All members of the campus community are encouraged to act responsibly, for their own protection and for the protection of others.

It doesn’t matter where you are going to live on campus or off, all of us have to take responsibility for our personal safety. If you decide to live on campus in a residence hall, review this Web site for Residential Living. Should your decision turn to living in Off Campus housing, you should review the following two Web sites. The first is Prairie State Legal Services‘Renter’s Handbook’ which provides information on Landlord - Tenant agreements, including check lists and other advice to assist you in making a good decision. The second site will provide you with information about the City of Peoria and the various city codes and ordinances.(scroll down and click on "links.")

Residence Security

On-Campus Residence Halls and Apartments

  1. Exterior doors are locked for your safety. Do not prop them open.
  2. Do not leave notes on doors indicating you are gone.
  3. Keep small articles of value in a drawer and out of sight. Engrave large articles of value such as stereos or TVs with a personal identifier. Take several pictures of small items of value. Make a record, and keep one copy at school and one copy at home.
  4. Lock your door even if you will only be gone for a few minutes.
  5. If your roommate is sleeping, lock the door if you are going out.
  6. Door-to-door solicitation has to be University approved. If you have doubts about solicitor’s credentials, contact dorm staff, University Police, or the Student Activities Office.
  7. Maintenance staff should have identification. In most cases, maintenance staff will make arrangements with you prior to doing service work.
  8. Report all repair needs promptly.
  9. Contact University Police if you suspect someone is acting suspicious. Get description!
  10. Do not loan out your room key, ID, etc., as these items may be duplicated.
  11. You need to discuss with your roommate and hall staff any overnight guest you are planning to have stay.

Off-Campus Apartments and Homes

If you decide to live off-campus, the following suggestions may help insure your safety. Should you view homes or apartments, make notes and discuss with the owner/landlord any problems or safety concerns, and make sure you both agree and sign off on when the problem will be repaired.

Before you decide to rent, the following tips can be helpful:

  1. Read your lease and make changes. It is especially important that you get and keep your own copies of the lease and all correspondence between you and your landlord. In addition, if you pay cash for rent, a deposit or anything else, get a receipt and keep it. Without one, you cannot prove that you actually made the payment.
  2. Check how close the rental unit is to supermarkets, laundry facilities, transportation and your place of employment or school.
  3. Check with neighbors in the area for their opinions on the location, the landlord, the safety of the building and the neighborhood.
  4. Bring the housing code violation checklist with you and check the unit thoroughly.
  5. Find out if you are responsible to pay for utilities and garbage collection. If you are, check with former tenants about the amount of the bills.
  6. If you will be sharing the unit with other people, be sure to go together when possible.
  7. Make a list of all furnishings and anything else that has been promised. Have the landlord sign this list. Check the condition of all furniture.
  8. Check the security of the building.
  9. If parking is to be provided, make sure you know where it is and that it meets your needs. Make sure that you get a guaranteed space as stated in the lease, especially if you have to pay an extra charge for it.
  10. Find out who is expecting to take care of the grounds, hall and sidewalks.
  11. Check for fire exists.
  12. Beware of basement apartments. These are more likely to have bugs, floods and burglars.
  13. Turn on water taps, flush the toilet and check the working condition of all appliances.
  14. Check the baseboards and around radiators for holes that may indicate the presence of mice or bugs or air leaks. Check cupboards and dark corners of the kitchen and bathroom for any evidence of insects. Ask about extermination. Is it done on a regular basis? Is this guaranteed in the lease?
  15. Check to see if the electrical wiring is safe. Are there enough outlets?
  16. Find out if there are enough windows to provide adequate light and air. Do the windows and locks operate properly? Does the landlord provide screens and storm windows?
  17. Check doors for dead-bolt locks that work.
  18. Is the rental unit well lighted? Is the surrounding area well lighted? (porches, hallways, garage, yard)
  19. Find out who has keys to the unit or have the locks changed.
  20. If the building is a multi-unit apartment complex, does the outer security door lock?
  21. Check for working smoke detectors and fire extinguishers.
  22. Check for locks on the mailboxes. If there are none, ask your landlord and mail carrier about obtaining one.
  23. Do the doors have peepholes?

Be sure that you…

  • …get all agreements and promises in writing.
  • …do not pay any money unless you know exactly what it is for.
  • …do not put down a deposit if you are not sure you want the place unless you are guaranteed IN WRITING that it is refundable.
  • …get a receipt for all money paid.
  • …are able to afford the rent and want to live there.
  • …know and trust the people you will be living with.
  • …know the landlord’s business and home phone number and address.
  • …know the manager of your building and his/her business and home phone number and address.
  • …keep emergency phone numbers in each room.
  • …put automatic timers on various lamps and a radio
  • …check to see if your property is covered under your family insurance policy. If not, purchase renter’s insurance for your property.
  • …do not open doors to strangers or unexpected repair people. Ask for ID, and call to the company to verify credentials if the situation seems suspicious.

If you think someone is inside your home, or if there are signs of entry, CALL THE POLICE. Do not go inside.

The following web sites will assist you in deciding if apartment living is right for you.

General Personal Safety Tips

Walking, jogging, or biking…

  1. Know your area of travel and general neighborhood
  2. Use well-lighted and busy streets. Try to avoid deserted streets, vacant lots, alleys, construction sites, and wooded areas.
  3. Use the “Buddy System” whenever possible.
  4. Never Hitchhike.
  5. Walk or jog facing traffic so you can see approaching cars. If biking, follow all the rules for safety that apply to vehicle use, and stay to the right of the road.
  6. If you suspect you are being followed, cross the street and head for the nearest well lighted, populated area. If necessary, quickly walk or run to a house or store to call police. If you are scared, scream for help. If the person following is in a car, immediately change directions and try to note the license plate number and the make, model, and color of the car.
  7. Have your key in hand as you approach your car or home.
  8. Wear shoes that you can run in if necessary.
  9. Know the location of emergency phones.
  10. Avoid jogging, biking, or walking at night.
  11. Do not flaunt expensive jewelry and clothing.
  12. Carrying money? Wallets should be kept in an inside coat or pants pocket, not in a rear pants pocket. If a purse must be carried, keep it close to your body and keep a firm grip on it.
  13. Do not wear stereo headphones. They keep you from hearing what is around and behind you.
  14. Do not overburden yourself with packages and groceries. They make it harder to react to a situation.
  15. When using a pay phone, stay alert. Keep the phone call short and simple.

Women may want to consider taking the Bradley University Police Department’s Rape Aggression Defense (RAD) class. You can check with the police department for dates and times.

How to Report a Crime or Emergency

In an emergency

  • Stay calm
  • Act quickly
  • Call for help from a safe place

Be prepared to give the following information

  • Building name
  • Room or apartment number
  • Street address
  • Nearby landmarks, if outdoors
  • Type of emergency
  • Fire: Report the type and size of fire
  • Medical: Report the type of illness or injury and any specific
    cause
  • Police: Identify the crime or danger and give descriptions of 
    suspects and, if a vehicle is involved, its description and
    its direction of travel
  • Chemical: Identify the chemical involved, quantity, hazards,
    and injuries

Violent Incident

  1. If the event is taking place elsewhere in the building, lock the door and move students or staff members out of the line of view of the door.
  2. Emergency situations should be reported to law enforcement by dialing 911.
  3. When 911 is dialed, the Peoria City Police Department will receive the call and contact the BU Police Department if the incident is located on University property.
  4. The 911 call will also appear on a computer screen in the DPS dispatch center.
  5. When you dial 911, be prepared to provide as much information as possible, such as the following:
    What is happening? Location?
    Who is involved?
    Type of weapon(s) involved, if any.
    Your name and address.
  6. Taking the time to provide such information will not delay law enforcement response. Complete information may allow them to handle the matter more effectively.

What is 911?

911 is an emergency telephone number that provides immediate and direct access to police, fire, and ambulance services.

When to use 911

911 should only be used when urgent police, fire, or ambulance assistance is required. Non-emergency numbers should be used for other contact with police, fire, or ambulance services. Consult the telephone book for the appropriate administrative numbers for your non-emergency calls.

What the 911 operator will tell you to do

  • Stay on the telephone
  • Do not hang up. Even if dialed in error.
  • The 911 operator will notify the appropriate emergency response agency.
  • Emergency medical instructions will be provided if appropriate.

Enhanced 911 Service

All university phones are capable of dialing 911 without dialing the prefix 9. This improves our emergency response capability. From any phone on campus, you can reach police, fire, and ambulance by dialing 911. As enhanced 911 service, the location of your call is signaled to the City of Peoria dispatchers. They will notify a Bradley University Police Officer or Peoria Police Officer.

When non-urgent assistance is needed

Some crimes may have been committed during a time when you may not have witnessed it. This crime may be a burglary or vandalism that you discover after the fact. If you discover crimes like this or a crime that does not require immediate police presence, you should contact the local agency, explain what you have found and follow their advice.

If you live, On Campus and the crime or situation is an EMERGENCY, dial 911 to get a quick response from the Bradley University Police, City Police, Fire or Ambulance Services. All NON EMERGENCY crimes or any issue you suspect may be important for the safety of you or fellow student’s, can be reported to the Bradley University Police, first by dialing 677-2000, however, the Peoria Police, or the Bradley Housing, Residential Life, and Student Judicial System, may be contacted if you are unsure of what action to take. (See Important Phone Numbers)

If you live in Off-Campus houses or apartments, your call should be to the Peoria Police Department. If it is an EMERGENCY such as a crime in progress, fire or medical dial 911. If you have a NON EMERGENCY situation and you need to speak with a police officer you can dial the Peoria Police Department at 673-4521. (See Important Phone Numbers)

The Bradley University Police Department will respond to any crime in progress or past criminal acts and perform or assist in any investigation. The department will alert the campus community of any dangers, as appropriate, through the University Police Web site, under the ‘Alert’ section, or the Audix telephone service, or the local media. Follow-up counseling or other trauma services are available to any victim of a crime or other stressful situations experienced by a student. The appointment can be arranged as needed, and additional information can be found in the Web site Bradley University Health Services.

Important Phone Numbers

EMERGENCY police, fire, ambulance 911
Non-Emergency
Bradley University Police 677-2000
Peoria Police 673-4521
Peoria Fire Department 674-3131

St. Francis Hospital
24-hr. emergency services 655-2109
non-emergency 655-2000

Methodist Hospital 
24-hr. emergency services 672-5500
non-emergency 672-5522

Bradley Health Services 
emergency 677-3200
non-emergency 677-2700
counselor (on call) 676-7611
coordinator for sexual assault & sexual harassment 677-3218

Suicide Prevention & Crisis Intervention Hotline 673-7373 or 673-8336

Housing, Residential Life, and Student Judicial System 
Executive Director 677-3221
Residential Life office 677-3218
Student Judicial System 677-2428

Sexual Assault (Center for Prevention of Abuse) 
Hotline 691-4111 or 1-800-559-SAFE
Innerstrength 691-0551

Alcohol and Drug Dependency 
White Oaks Companies 692-6900
Peoria Area Intergroup Association 673-1456
Proctor Chemical Dependency Center 691-1055
Illinois Institute for Addiction & Recovery 1-800-522-3784

Peoria County Legal System 
Peoria County Victim Witness Services 672-6094
State’s Attorney 672-6900

Nuisance/Obscene/Threatening Phone Calls

In Illinois, it is a violation of law to use your telephone, or knowingly allow your telephone to be used, for placing indecent, threatening, or harassing calls. Nuisance and obscene phone calls are classified in the Illinois criminal code as Class B Misdemeanors (720 ILCS 135/1-2). Threatening calls are classified as a Class 3 Felony (720 ILCS 135/12-16). If you receive harassing or threatening calls:

  1. Hang up immediately on obscene callers or strangers who ask questions about personal matters.
  2. Do not engage the caller in conversation.
  3. Pay attention to background noise and the caller’s voice (gender, etc.) that may assist in identifying the caller.
  4. If the call is recorded on the answering machine, save the tape.
  5. Keep a log or record of the call(s) that includes date, time, and comments.
  6. Do not volunteer your name or other personal data to any caller you do not know. If you have an interest, ask the caller for their phone number and you will get back to them.
  7. Do not tell others about your calls. Many disturbing calls are made by people you know.
  8. If the caller keeps calling, contact your phone carrier and/or University Police.
  9. If the call is a threat to your safety, contact University Police and your phone company.

ID Theft

Identity theft occurs when someone uses your personal information such as your name, Social Security number, credit card number or other identifying information, without your permission to commit fraud or other crimes.

How ID theft occurs: Skilled identity thieves use a variety of methods to gain access to your personal information. They get information by stealing records from their employer; hacking into the organization’s computers; rummaging through your trash; stealing credit and debit card numbers as your card is processed by using a special information device in a practice known as “skimming;” stealing wallets or bank and credit card statements; or completing a “change of address form” to divert your mail to another location.

“Phishing” is a kind of credit and debit card fraud. By pretending to be an e-mail from a bank or similar site, scammers “fish” for account numbers, passwords, Social Security numbers and other personal information. Phishing e-mail schemes change frequently and often have links or attachments with links. Users who click on the links are taken to look-alike sites where they are asked to enter personal data.

Once identity thieves have your personal information, they may: go on spending sprees; open new credit card accounts; take out auto loans, establish phone or wireless service in your name; file for bankruptcy under your name, or give your name to the police during an arrest.

If you are a victim of ID theft, or if you suspect that your personal information has been used to commit fraud or theft, take the following four steps immediately:

  1. Contact the fraud departments of one of the three major credit bureaus (Equifax 1-800-525-6285; Experian 1-888-397-3742; or TransUnion 1-800-680-7289) to place a fraud alert on your credit report. The fraud alert requests creditors to contact you before opening any new accounts or making any changes to your existing accounts. As soon as the credit bureau confirms your fraud alert, the other two credit bureaus will be automatically notified to place fraud alerts, and all three credit reports will be sent to you free of charge.
  2. Close the accounts that you know or believe have been tampered with or opened fraudulently. Use the ID Theft Affidavit (available atwww.ftc.gov/affidavit.pdf) when disputing new unauthorized accounts.
  3. File a police report. Get a copy of the report to submit to your creditors and others who may require proof of the crime.
  4. File your complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). The FTC maintains a database of identity theft cases used by law enforcement agencies for investigations. Filing a complaint also helps the FTC to learn more about identity theft and the problems victims are having so that they can better assist you.

For more in-depth information on ID Theft, check out http://www.criminal-justice-careers.com/crime/id-theft.html

Consumer Fraud

It can be hard to resist a phone call from a charity seeking desperately needed funds for flood victims, endangered species, or the homeless; a postcard claiming you’ve won an amazing sweepstakes prize if you just call and send an “administrative fee;” or an investment offer giving you an “exclusive” chance to earn potentially enormous profits, but such pone calls may make you a victim of telemarketing fraud. Here is what you can do:

  1. If a caller asks for your credit card, bank account, or Social Security number to verify a free vacation, a prize, or a gift, say “No” and hang up.
  2. If you are calling a 900 number in response to an advertisement or something you receive in the mail, make sure you know all the charges up front.
  3. Before you agree to support a charity that calls seeking money, ask for written information about its finances and programs, and feel free to hang up if you do not feel comfortable. It is your choice.

If you feel that you have been conned, call the police or the Better Business Bureau.

Vehicle Safety

Vehicle Prevention Tips

  1. If possible, park in a well lit area and take your keys with you. Do not leave your car running even if you are going to just “run in” for a few minutes. An unattended car, with the motor running is an open invitation for it to be stolen.
  1. Make sure you turn your steering wheel so it locks in place
  2. Close all windows and make sure your doors are locked.
  3. Do not leave loose change or paper money in the center tray, CD’s, or other items of value in plain view. If you have packages or other items of value put them in the trunk.
  4. Keep you vehicle registration on your person, not in the glove compartment.
  5. Do not put your name, plate number, address or other type identifiers on your key ring. If your key chain is lost or stolen it can help the finder locate you vehicle.
  6. You may want to drop a business card or a return address label down the inside of the window car doors. If stolen this may assist the authorities to positively identify your car.
  7. Use an engraving tool to mark certain areas in side or out on your vehicle. Thieves often remove a VIN# plate, but may overlook items or areas that you’ve engraved.
  8. Immediately contact the police if your vehicle is broken into or items stolen. (See Important Phone Numbers)

Vehicle Devices

There are many different devices on the market to help protect your vehicle. Here are a few that you may want to consider.

  • A steering wheel “Wheel Lock.”
  • Locking gas caps.
  • Alarm systems that will activate a horn, lights or siren if a door or trunk is opened.

Additional Crime Prevention Resources and Programs

Operation Identification 

The University Police Department will lend engraving equipment to students, free of charge, to mark their valuables permanently, such as electronic equipment, appliances, bicycles, etc.

Campus Awareness for Rape Education (C.A.R.E.) 

C.A.R.E. is a network of students and campus professionals who give educational presentations on rape awareness and prevention. The group, co-sponsored by the Center for Housing, Residential Life and Student Judicial System and the University Police Department, also provides information regarding campus and community referral resources.

Crime Prevention Presentations and Materials 

Crime prevention presentations are made to student groups throughout the year by campus police officers or guest speakers.

A variety of pamphlets and videos dealing with personal safety and security is available on campus from the University Police Department in the Parking Deck, University Health Services in Heitz Hall and Harper Hall, and the Center for Housing, Residential Life and Student Judicial System in Sisson Hall.

Asset Labeling

All university equipment with a value over a stated amount is labeled "Property of Bradley University" to deter theft and simplify the return of equipment when recovered.

Disclaimer

The information contained in this Web site may contain inaccuracies or other errors. The information may be updated without notice and is provided as a source of suggestions to help from becoming a victim. Reliance on this information is done at the reader’s own discretion.

Links provided to other Web sites are included as additional resources. Bradley University, the University Police Department or other University personnel are not liable for information supplied whether direct, indirect, special, or other consequential damages for any use of any of the information in this Web site or any other linked sites.