Around two-thirds of American colleges and universities now have armed law enforcement officers with full arrest powers, according to a Justice Department report. This is despite crime rates continuing to fall across the United States.
Colleges employ 32,000 law enforcement personnel, according to the review. Sworn campus police officers are used for security at 92 percent of public institutions, a much higher number than at private campuses, where 38 percent of schools have sworn officers. Those personnel used at public establishments have full arrest powers.
Of these sworn campus officers, 94 percent are authorized to use a sidearm, chemical or pepper spray, while 93 percent are allowed to use a baton and 40 percent to use a Taser. The report shows in the instances where colleges hired non-sworn law enforcement recruits, only 11 percent are authorized to use firearms, 48 percent to use chemical or pepper spray, and 32 percent to carry a baton. Just four percent have the authorization to use a Taser.