Drug and alcohol violations are down on USC’s campus, report says

Vehicle thefts and drug and alcohol violations were down on the University of South Carolina’s campus in 2018 from previous years, a new report has found.

The number of USC students disciplined for drug violations in 2018 decreased by 29 percent compared to 2017, while the number of those punished for alcohol violations decreased by 20 percent, according to the school’s annual Clery Act report.

The decrease in disciplinary referrals also tracks with a decrease in on-campus arrests for drugs and alcohol. The number of students arrested for violating drug laws decreased from 166 to 147 between 2017 and 2018, while the number of those arrested for liquor law violations decreased from 30 to 18 percent, according to the report.

USC spokesman Jeff Stensland attributes these decreases to a series of changes in state law.

S.C.’s “limited immunity” or “good Samaritan” law — which provides conditional, legal protection for someone who calls 911 because of a friend overdosing or drinking excessively — has led to fewer students being arrested for drug or alcohol possession, Stensland said.

Motor vehicle thefts — mostly stolen mopeds — were down 61 percent, the report shows. That’s mostly because a new law requiring mopeds to be registered has reduced the number of mopeds on campus, Stensland said.

Though there were fewer alcohol and drug violations reported on campus in 2018, campus safety remains an issue. There were nine reported rapes on campus in 2018, which is the same number reported in 2017. There was a criminal arrest for possession of an illegal weapon and five disciplinary referrals for illegal weapons possession. In 2017, there were also five referrals for illegal weapons possession, according to the report.

The possession of an illegal weapon arrest involved a non-student after police searched a car and found marijuana and a firearm, Stensland said. None of the student referrals involved a gun, Stensland said.

“The student disciplines for weapons violations were all related to students having knives in dorm rooms, which violates our housing policy,” Stensland said. “There were no threats or other criminal violations associated with the possession.”

The number of fondling cases increased from one to five. The number of cases of dating violence increased from seven to nine between 2017 and 2018. There were three aggravated assaults in both 2017 and 2018, the report shows.

The report factors in crimes from throughout areas owned by USC or areas frequented by USC students.

There have been no hate crimes reported on USC’s campus between 2015 and 2018, according to the report and a prior year’s report.

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FBI index crimes

Type of crime 201620172018

Murder/non-negligent manslaughter


Manslaughter by negligence






Statutory Rape




Aggravated assault

Motor vehicle theft655421

Violence Against Women Act offenses

Type of crime 201620172018

Domestic Violence


Dating Violence




Other criminal arrests

Type of crime201620172018

Illegal Weapons Possession


Drug Law Violations


Liquor Law Violations


Disciplinary referrals

Type of violation201620172018

Illegal Weapons Possession


Drug Law Violations


Liquor Law Violations