Campus violence: jealousy, stress, sexual aggression leading causes, says report
In the wake of the Virginia Tech Tragedy, the FBI, the U.S. Secret Service, and the U.S. Department of Education were asked to study violence on college campuses. The study was completed in April, just a month before the alleged attack and murder of UVA student-athlete Yeardley Love, and its findings appear to suggest that American college campuses are sexually charged, stressful environments where men are most often the attackers.
Of the 272 incidents of assault studied, 161 of the attackers were current or former students. Of those killed, 190 were students and 72 were employees of the college. Of those injured, 144 were students and 35 were employees.
According to the study, 60 percent of campus attacks studied were against “current or former non-spouse intimate partners,” and 15 percent were against “current or former spouses.” Of the attacks, 94 percent were committed by men.
Among the factors that motivated attacks, some form of jealousy, revenge, stress, and sexual aggression top the list. Factors relating to “intimate relationships” lead the way, closely followed by sexual advances being refused and an obsession with someone.
Twenty-nine percent of the attackers harassed or stalked their victims beforehand, and in 31 percent of the attacks “concerning” behavior of the attacker was observed by friends, family, associates, professors, or law enforcement officials. As is the case with the Love murder, media reports following the attacks often uncovered “concerning” behavior that had not been widely observed by those who knew or were associated with the attacker.