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September 28, 2007

School crimes under wraps: Assaults, robberies not always reported to police

Jessica Blanchard & Casey McNerthney:

King County prosecutors on Wednesday charged two Seattle teenagers in a sexual assault on a developmentally disabled female classmate in a Rainier Beach High School restroom in June -- an incident that school officials never reported to police.

A Seattle P-I review of police and Seattle Public Schools records shows that case isn't the only likely crime that wasn't reported to police. While a majority of incidents on school campuses were recorded into the district's safety and security logs and reported to police if necessary, some incidents weren't -- including cases of assaults and strong-arm robberies.

In a few cases, parents or victims say school officials urged them not to report the crimes to police at all.

Pegi McEvoy, who recently took over as interim manger of Seattle schools' safety and security department, acknowledged that the district had a "fragmented" system for documenting and tracking alleged crimes on campuses. This fall, though, district security specialists began filing their reports electronically -- one of a handful of changes intended to streamline and strengthen the reporting process, she said.


Posted by Jim Zellmer at September 28, 2007 12:00 AM
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