College students at higher risk of being stalked

College students face a higher risk of being stalked than the general public, says a US-based study.

According to the study, 4.3 percent of college students experienced the crime in the last 12 months compared with 2.2 percent of the general public.

Stalking is defined as a repeated course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to feel fear.

The results showed that the students were also less likely to report the crime to police.

Only one-quarter of college victims filed reports with the police, compared with 32 percent of the general population.

“The findings from the current analysis suggest that more is needed to build the capacity of universities and public safety officials to systematically address the barriers that inhibit victims from reporting,” said study co-author Patrick Brady from Sam Houston State University in the US.

The findings are based on data from the 2006 National Crime Victimization Survey.

Stalking most commonly occurs between current or former intimate partners, with the highest rates of offences occurring between the ages of 18 to 24 years old, the study added.

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