Monday, April 08, 2002

OSU area has highest crime rate in Columbus

The Associated Press

        COLUMBUS — For the last 10 years, the densely populated district around Ohio State University consistently has led downtown neighborhoods in all violent crime except homicide, according to an analysis of crime statistics by the Columbus Dispatch.

        More than half of the violent crimes in the three-square-mile University District last year occurred in an area where about 15,000 students live, the newspaper reported Sunday. That includes two-thirds of the 1,494 burglaries and car thefts; almost all the 36 rapes, 289 robberies and 1,305 assaults; and two of the three killings in that district.

        The analysis showed the neighborhood of North Linden, northeast of the University District, led the neighborhoods in homicides with eight in 2001.

        Criminals see students as easy targets made defenseless by naivete and sometimes alcohol, police said. And the district, which swells by up to 100,000 people every weekday, allows criminals to blend into the crowd.

        “Who looks out of place in the campus area?” Sgt. Terry Perrigo, who works in the district, told the newspaper. “Absolutely everything you can name is down here.”


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