Published: Aug. 21, 2014

Welcome to the start of another academic year at CU-Boulder. As the university chief of police, my top priority is ensuring that students, faculty and staff have a safe, welcoming environment to go about their studies and work. A key component of that goal is keeping you informed about crime and campus safety issues.

At CU-Boulder, serious criminal activity is unusual. Theft and other property crimes make up the bulk of our cases. While we are not immune from more serious crime that you would typically see at any large university or city, we are among the safest campuses in the Pac-12 Conference.

But occasionally, serious crime will occur. And when it does, we are going to tell you about it. We do this not only to foster effective communication between our department and the campus, but so that you can take proactive measures for your personal safety. We also do this to be in compliance with federal law. The federal Clery Act requires timely warnings be sent to the campus following our learning of alleged sex assaults, robberies and other major crimes that occur on or adjacent to campus that cause a serious or continuing threat.

It is our goal to be vigilant in meeting all of these requirements. In each case, we determine if there is a need to communicate to the campus to ensure people are aware of a possible crime – even if that crime is not yet fully verified – if we think there is an ongoing threat to our community. We will communicate with you via email and tell you what we know at the time. In more urgent situations, you’ll receive a text message from us. (Learn more at

Being informed allows you to take proactive steps toward your safety. It can also help us solve crimes. To that end, I would also encourage you to follow us on Facebook and Twitter, where we post other crime alerts, crime prevention tips, emergency preparedness info and more. I wish you a successful and safe school year.

Melissa Zak

Chief of Police,
University of Colorado Boulder