DTM more dangerous for women than UVA? Stats, evidence suggest otherwise

USA today shotDTM safety has again become the focus of national news in light of the disappearance of Hannah Graham, who was last seen outside Tempo restaurant on September 13. A recent article in USAToday ran with the theme of “differing sense of security” between UVA campus and the Downtown Mall area, suggesting the DTM is far more dangerous.

“It’s never been safe down here late at night,” says a Mall waitress. “People think that because the campus is so safe and secure, it’s safe everywhere in Charlottesville. It’s just not.”

Really? USA Today seems to have neglected the recently released UVA crime data for 2013, during which there were 15 reported rapes and fondlings on grounds. Past reports say there were 14 in 2012, 14 in 2011, and 17 reported rapes in 2010. In addition, UVA is currently under federal investigation for allegedly mishandling the investigation of a 2011 rape of a third-year UVA student. Heck, there’s even a website called UVA Victims of Rape. Oh, and as you may recall, the same weekend Hannah Graham disappeared, UVA police reported there were two reported sexual assaults, one near Wertland Street, and another on nearby 15th Street NW.

While current crime stats for the DTM weren’t immediately available, this reporter viewed crime stats on the Mall area for 2013 last year, and while there were a number of public disturbances, simple assaults, and other minor crimes, rapes were non-existent.

Not sure where this “the Mall is dangerous” stuff is coming from, as the statistical evidence clearly doesn’t back that notion up. Maybe its because the Mall is an urban setting, with different kinds of people? Who knows. But when it comes to violence against women around here, we’d say the New York Times got it right.


David McNair View All →

writer. journalist. editor

6 Comments Leave a comment

  1. Just because UVA campus is way worse does not mean the downtown mall is safe. You really need to factor in not only statistics but the very fact that most potential victims avoid the mall after midnight. I wonder how many crimes there would be if single women started walking down the mall at one AM like Hannah did. You are giving people a false sense of security. anyone browsing the mall at that time can se the wolves in the wings.

    • I’m just coming from the Mall at this time with my girl. And you are full of shit. We had a wonderful time, met some lovely people. There is absolutely no statistical evidence to suggest the Mall is dangerous like you say. You are giving people a false sense of fear.

  2. So your girl was escorted by you…. well why don’t you see how comfortable you or she would be walking down the same track at two am….

    I don’t care about your “statistics… a river that is 10 feet wide and has a crevice in the center 100 foot deep may only “average” 4 feet using statistics.

    Liberal blinders get people killed….

  3. Crimes against women? Okay so a college campus has higher instances of rape and sexual assault than downtown. Surprise surprise! I would have never guessed in an area where a bunch of young kids just now getting to taste freedom that get really intoxicated there would be more rapes and sexual assaults. Sarcasm obviously.

    What about the muggings, vehicle break-ins, and assaults? Oh yeah that’s not convenient to talk about because it doesn’t fit your agenda.

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