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What is a crime?

Crime includes illegal acts that are punishable by law.

Examples of criminal behaviors on campus:

  • Assault
  • Burglary
  • Destruction of or damage to property
  • Domestic or dating violence
  • Drug or alcohol law violation
  • Hate crime
  • Intimidation
  • Robbery
  • Theft
  • Weapons violations

How to report a criminal act

We encourage the Northwestern community to report criminal incidents, suspicious activity and emergencies.

Emergency Situations

In emergency situations or if there is immediate danger, dial 911. 

You can also contact Emergency Police through “blue light” telephones. They are situated in strategic locations on both the Chicago and Evanston campuses to quickly reach University Police to report crimes, suspicious activity, medical emergencies or concerns about your personal safety.

For non-emergency situations, see reporting mechanisms below.

Report directly to University Police

Reporter: Any member of the Northwestern community can report a crime or suspicious activity.

Confidentiality: Due to the potential need to contact the crime-reporting party for follow-up investigative inquiries, Northwestern Police does not typically allow anonymous reporting of crimes. Police reports will often include information such as the names and identifying information related to the reporting party and the suspect or alleged offender and an incident description, as well as names and identifying information of witnesses. 

Visit the University Police website

Report directly to Campus Security Authorities (CSA)

Reporter: Victims and witnesses of crime who do not want to pursue action within the University or the state criminal justice system. 

Confidentiality: Campus Security Authorities will report the incident to Northwestern Police and/or University Compliance. CSAs will provide a detailed description without identifying the alleged victim, witnesses, or perpetrator. The purpose of this type of report is to comply with the reporting party’s wish to keep the matter anonymous while taking steps to contribute to future campus safety.

File a CSA Crime Report

File an Anonymous Online Report

Reporter: Any individual can use EthicsPoint, which has anonymous reporting options.

Confidentiality: While such complaints will retain anonymity, the University's ability to investigate and respond to anonymous complaints is limited.

File an EthicsPoint Report

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Know your rights: Northwestern's Non-Retaliation Policy

Northwestern's Policy on Non-Retaliation strictly prohibits retaliation against any member of its community for reporting or inquiring in good faith about suspected wrongful or unlawful activity, or participating in an investigation or proceeding related to such activity. The University considers such actions to be protected activities in which all members may freely engage without worry of negative consequences.