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Nov. 20, 2007
CONTACT: Ward Mullens

EMU receives final report from U.S. Department of Education regarding handling of death of Laura Dickinson

YPSILANTI - Eastern Michigan University has received the final report from the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) about its handling of the death of student Laura Dickinson in December 2006.

“We are carefully reviewing the report and determining what we need to do to fully satisfy any DOE concerns and take a proactive stance in the future,” said Don Loppnow, Executive Vice President and Provost for EMU.

“In addition to affirming its preliminary findings, the Department of Education’s final report provides an assessment of policy/procedure revisions and action steps taken by EMU to ensure compliance,” said Ken McKanders, EMU’s attorney.

The DOE final report does not include punitive action for EMU. The DOE report states that it refers its findings to the Department’s Administrative Actions and Appeals Division (AAAD) for consideration of possible administrative action, such as fines.

The 26-page document restates each of the seven preliminary findings, evaluates EMU’s response to each and provides a final determination for each response.

The seven findings included: failure to provide a “timely warning” in response to a homicide investigation of an on-campus student death; lack of administrative capability; lack of a timely warning policy; failure to properly disclose crime statistics; lack of adequate policy statements; failure to report all required statistics occurring on public property and in non-campus buildings and property; and failure to properly maintain the crime log.

The DOE final report states that the actions taken by EMU, including the revisions of policies/procedures, “should significantly correct and improve compliance with the Clery Act.”

The final report also notes several concerns that include EMU’s process of obtaining crime data from local police agencies; the specific listing of all Clery Act crimes in EMU’s policies/procedures; EMU’s updating of the DOE’s Crime Statistics Web Site; and EMU’s response to the August 2005 loss/theft of master keys.


Eastern Michigan University is a public, comprehensive university that offers programs in the arts, sciences and professions. EMU prepares students with the intellectual skills and practical experiences to succeed in their career and lives, and to be better citizens.

Editor's Note: Looking for an expert source for a story? Check out EMU's Eastern Experts online at www.emich.edu/univcomm/easternexperts.

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