How to Report Crime and Emergencies

The University of Pittsburgh encourages everyone in the Pitt community to report crimes and other emergencies promptly to the Pitt police or to other appropriate police agencies if off campus. At sessions conducted for freshmen and their parents, participants are advised to report all information regarding any incident to the Pitt police. University police department seminars and publications offer crime prevention tips and emphasize the importance of reporting crimes. 

A student, resident director, University police officer, or any other member of the Pitt community can also refer a violation of the Student Code of Conduct to the Office of Student Conduct.

Reporting to Pitt Police 

You can report criminal activity or other emergencies to Pitt police by calling 4-2121 from a campus phone or 412-624-2121 from a noncampus phone. Crimes may also be reported by:

  • Using the anonymous tips portion of the University of Pittsburgh Police Department.
  • Picking up a campus emergency phone. These phones ring directly to the Pitt police, automatically registering the caller’s location.
  • Visiting the University of Pittsburgh Jerome Cochran Public Safety Building (3412 Forbes Avenue) or any of these substations: Sutherland Hall, Forbes Avenue (between the Barco Law Building and Lawrence Hall), Sennott Square, or Bouquet Gardens J.
  • Contacting the resident assistant, resident director, or other residence life staff member in the residence halls; guards or desk attendants; or any University official who will then contact the Pitt police, if desired. 

Incidents involving sexual harassment, sexual  violence, stalking, and/or dating and domestic violence may also be reported to the Office of Diversity and Inclusion at 412-648-7860.

Reporting to Other Campus Security Authorities

While the University prefers that community members promptly report all crimes and other emergencies directly to the Pitt police at 412-624-2121, we also recognize that some may prefer to report to other individuals or University offices. The federal Jeanne Clery Act recognizes certain University officials and offices as Campus Security Authorities (CSA). The act defines these individuals as “officials of an institution who have significant responsibility for student and campus activities, including, but not limited to, student housing, student discipline, and campus judicial proceedings.” In addition to the Pitt police, persons within the University who are designated as CSA include housing and residence life staff, the campus student conduct officer, athletic coaches, security guards and desk attendants, and faculty advisors to student groups. University counselors voluntarily provide nonidentifying information on crimes reported to them.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q What should I do if I am a victim of hazing?
A  Hazing is absolutely prohibited by the University and by state law (see the anti-hazing policy in the Student Code of Conduct). Students who feel they have been victims of hazing should contact the Pitt police (4-2121), the Office of Student Conduct (412-648-7910), the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life (412-648-9523), or the Department of Athletics (412-648-8230 or 412-648-8218).

Q Can I carry a gun on campus as a means of self-protection?
A  No. The carrying or possession of firearms and/or other weapons on campus by anyone other than authorized law enforcement officers, such as Pitt police or city of Pittsburgh police, is absolutely prohibited.

Q  How do I report suspected child abuse or sexual misconduct with a child at the University?
A  Anyone affiliated with the University who has reasonable cause to suspect child abuse, including but not limited to sexual abuse, shall make an immediate and direct report to ChildLine either electronically at compass.state.pa.us/cwis or by calling 1-800-932-0313. Immediately thereafter, the individual must also make an immediate and direct report to the University police or the Office of University Counsel. Retaliation is strictly prohibited against anyone who makes a good faith report of suspected child abuse or who participates in a related investigation. View more information on reporting child abuse.

Confidential Reporting 

Q  Can my report be confidential? 
A  Pitt’s counseling center includes a confidential reporting system that allows anonymous crime reporting. Campus security authorities will submit a report of any on-campus assault so it is reflected among Pitt’s crime statistics in the annual statistical report, and the identity of the victim remains anonymous in the annual statistical report. Read more about confidentiality explained in further detail.

Timely Warning Reports

Crime Alerts–Timely Warning

In the event of a reported crime, the chief of police at each University of Pittsburgh campus is responsible for 

  1. determining whether a Crime Alert is required,
  2. preparing the content of the Crime Alert, and 
  3. distributing the Crime Alert as promptly as reasonably possible to aid in the prevention of similar occurrences.

Determination

A Crime Alert will be issued when a serious, unresolved crime is committed on or adjacent to campus and the crime creates a threat of immediate physical harm to faculty, staff, or students, and the likelihood of repetition is such that a report is necessary to aid in the prevention of similar occurrences. Crime Alerts will not be issued if, in the professional judgment of the chief of police, the crime is not considered to create a threat to the campus community.

Content

Crime Alerts describe the alleged actor(s), the nature, date, time, and location of the crime, and the type of precautions that individuals should take to prevent similar occurrences. Crime alerts do not contain identifying information about the victim(s).

Distribution

Crime Alerts are distributed to all affected administrative officers, campus presidents, deans, directors, and department heads for dissemination to persons within their areas of responsibility. 

In addition, Crime Alerts will be made available at University buildings, posted on relevant University bulletin boards, displayed on the University police department’s Web site (for the Pittsburgh campus) and Facebook page for 30 days or until the crime is resolved, and reported to the campus’ media relations office. You may also sign up to receive crime alerts via text message.

In the event these communication media are unavailable, alternate posting may be made through the University’s Audix system or other modes of communication.