Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

UTSA to pay $670k for underreporting campus crimes

Lauren Hernandez

President Taylor Eighmy shared a message with the campus community on Aug. 29 regarding UTSA’s settlement with the Department of Education (DOE). The settlement was offered after an audit of the university’s campus crime reporting uncovered 55 inadequately reported crimes between 2015 and 2017.

The Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act, or Clery Act, requires all colleges and universities who participate in federal financial aid programs to publish annual data concerning the number of reported crimes that occurred on or near its campuses. To ensure compliance with the law and promote safe college campuses, the U.S. Department of Education Office of the Inspector General (OIG) performs random reviews of the Clery programs and processes that take place at institutions of higher education nationwide.

In the fall of 2019, the OIG conducted an audit on UTSA which revealed that the university had inadequately reported at least 55 out of 173 eligible campus crime incidents between Jan. 2015 and Dec. 2017. According to the final report, the university failed to implement effective internal controls related to its reporting of Clery Act crime statistics during those three years. 

In his response to the audit, Eighmy described two factors that contributed to UTSA’s lack of effective Clery processes at the time: high staff turnover and a lack of internal expertise regarding Clery Act compliance. These issues have since been addressed, as explained in an email Eighmy sent to students, faculty and staff in 2020.

The outcome of the settlement, posted publicly by the DOE last month, requires UTSA to pay $670k in fines in addition to the corrective measures the university has taken. According to the notice, UTSA’s fine was the largest imposed in fiscal year 2022.

“Our commitment to providing a safe and welcoming campus environment where all Roadrunners can study, work, and live is resolute, and we take that responsibility very seriously,” Eighmy said in the message posted to UTSA Today last month. “Over the last five years, we have since taken substantial remedial actions and process improvements to ensure ongoing compliance with the Act.”

The Paisano asked UTSA to comment on the settlement with the DOE. However, the university shared they will not be issuing a media statement on the matter.

More information regarding the 2015 through 2017 Clery audit and the actions UTSA has taken to address the issues can be found at

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About the Contributors
Jessica McLaren, News Editor
Jessica McLaren is a senior digital communications student. She is from Austin, Texas, and she has been working with The Paisano for several years now — first as a staff writer and now as the News Editor. Though she has loved to write for virtually her entire life, Jess only recently discovered her passion for visual design through her studies at UTSA. She values open-mindedness and compassion and believes the media is a powerful tool that can be used to strengthen the forces of humanity if used mindfully. Once she graduates, Jess plans to use her expertise in writing, editing and design to help people better understand themselves and the world around them by creating compelling and engaging communication campaigns as a self-employed writer and designer. When she’s not writing an article or researching for one, you can usually find her reading a book about philosophy with a good cup of coffee.
Lauren Hernandez, Assistant Arts & Life Editor
Lauren (she/her) is a second year English student at UTSA. After graduation she plans on attending law school. Outside of The Paisano you can usually find her at a concert taking pictures, hiking in the woods, watching movies or thrifting with her sister.

Comments (2)

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  • R

    RachaelSep 7, 2023 at 8:34 am

    Thank you for sharing this information. With all the improvement measures UTSA is claiming to make, I’m even more disappointed in the way my safety complaints were handled after I was robbed at the Southwest campus last March. If they knew they were facing this kind of a fine I would’ve hoped they’d go out of their way to prevent crime instead of treating me like it was my fault.

  • M

    Mason HickokSep 5, 2023 at 6:35 pm

    Solid reporting here, y’all. Good work. This type of accountability is key.