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Northern Illinois University
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Public Safety
Procedure No. 17-1
Issued 11/2001


The Department of Public Safety is composed of police officers with appropriate authority and powers granted by state statute, security guards, and supportive civilian personnel.

The university police are given the responsibility to provide protection and services to the institution, its employees, students, and visitors. To do this, officers are available 24 hours every day to respond to requests for police assistance or services, and to take action on observed violations and/or hazards.

The security guards are non-sworn civilian personnel who assist the university police in providing security and environmental safety within the campus communities from 10:00 p.m. until 6:00 a.m. daily.

The supportive civilian personnel consists of police telecommunicators, records clerks, department secretary, student community service officers, and the extra help non-sworn civilian auxiliary personnel who are normally employed to augment the department during emergencies and large-scale special events.

The Department of Public Safety is a Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) for the DeKalb County Enhanced 911 system. Anyone needing emergency police, fire, or ambulance service is encouraged to call 9-1-1 from any telephone in DeKalb County.

Crimes Against Person(s) or Property

The university police will investigate all reports of criminal matters and activities that occur on university property.

When contacting the university police to report a crime or violation, identify yourself, your location, and briefly describe the type of assistance needed. An officer will be dispatched to investigate the matter.

If there is any evidence of criminal activity upon entering a building or office such as missing equipment, broken door or window, do not enter the room or touch anything, but immediately call university police. When circumstances permit, please wait for the arrival of the investigating officer.

When property becomes lost, stolen, or criminally damaged, it is necessary to provide the following information for a police report:

  1. The date, time, and location the property was last seen and by whom.

  2. A complete description of item(s), including:

    Model
    Manufacturer's Serial Number
    NIU Inventory Number
    Any identifying marks on item(s)
    Approximate Value of items(s)

Any missing university property must also be reported to the University Inventory Office at 753-1436. This is required of the person who has been assigned the responsibility for the property. In the event that the property reported missing is found, please notify the university police.

In addition to providing a traditional response to criminal matters brought to its attention, the department provides additional related services to the community.

Security Surveys and Alarm Systems

The Department of Public Safety monitors all fire, burglary, and hold-up alarms on university property.

If persons responsible for institutional property are interested in an alarm system, or merely want to improve the security for a department, office, area, or personnel, please request a survey for the purpose. Such a survey will be conducted by police officers trained in crime prevention.

The survey report will contain professional observations and recommendations for security improvement. The recommendations may include a variety of measures such as door replacement, new locks, key control, and/or an alarm system.

Implementation of the recommendations is up to the department requesting the survey. The Department of Public Safety has no budgeted funds for this purpose. There is no charge for conducting the security survey itself.

Community Service Programs

The Department of Public Safety believes it has some degree of responsibility for the formulation and presentation of measures the individual can adopt to protect himself or herself and personal belongings. To meet this responsibility to the community, the department has developed formal presentations and programs that address these matters. Some of the programs available include:

Sexual Assault/Abuse Awareness

Crime Prevention and Safety Tips

Weather Safety/plus several others

Persons interested in these programs may contact the department and request additional information from the Police Community Relations Coordinator.

Lost or Found Personal Property

Lost Property

After a reasonable check of the area where the item was lost, the incident may be reported to the university police. If it is determined that criminal activity is not involved, a "Lost Article" form will be filled out by the person reporting the loss. This information will be kept on file for the duration of the current semester. In the event that the article is turned over to the university police, it will be returned to the owner.

Found Property

Personal property found by students or staff of the university should be turned in to the university police where every attempt will be made to identify and notify the owner of the property.

All unclaimed property will be held a minimum of six (6) months, as required by Illinois statute. At the end of this time, all clothing and eyeglasses will be donated to local service organizations, and all other items of value will be sold at public auction and the proceeds placed into the NIU Income Fund.

For further information, or to report missing or found personal items, call 753-9690 between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. and ask for Lost and Found.

Fingerprinting

Individuals sometimes find it necessary to have their fingerprints taken for civil purposes. The university police provide such services, and they can be obtained by calling 753-9627 and asking for the Investigations Section. An appointment will be made at your convenience.