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Terminology Used in Incident Reports

Our team reports on security incidents that put personal or public safety at risk. By sharing this information, community members can stay informed and exercise appropriate precautions to help protect themselves and their property.

The definitions below are extracted from the Criminal Code of Canada, external link and are among the many laws enforced by our department in our daily operations.

Why we use Canadian Criminal Code terminology

We use the Canadian Criminal Code, external link to define the terminology in our security incidents as all persons in Canada are governed by its law and the supporting case law. It is important to use a nationally guided definition because it prevents any augmented interpretation of the law and is easily accessible and to interpret by any community members looking for additional information.

For further information and detail on the definitions, please review the links to the Criminal Code of Canada, external link provided below.

Incident types we report on

Incident type 

Abridged definition

Assault

An assault is when someone intentionally applies force (or attempts or threatens to apply force) to another person without their consent. 

Read the entire Canadian Criminal Code definition of assault, external link.

Criminal Harassment

Criminal harassment is to knowingly engage in conduct that causes a person to reasonably fear for their safety or the safety of someone they know, including following, repeated communication, or persistently watching someone where they live, work or play.

Read the entire Canadian Criminal Code definition of criminal harassment, external link.

Indecent act


An indecent act is an activity committed with a sexual context in a public place in the presence of one or more persons, or in any place with intent to insult or offend any person.

Read the entire Canadian Criminal Code definition of an indecent act, external link.

Mischief

Mischief is the willful destruction or damage of property, rendering property dangerous, useless, inoperative or ineffective, or interfering with anyone’s enjoyment or operation of property. It includes but is not limited to vandalism and destroying or altering computer data.

Read the entire Canadian Criminal Code definition of mischief, external link.

Robbery

A robbery is when someone steals (or attempts to steal), and uses violence or threats of violence to another person to obtain their personal property.

Read the entire Canadian Criminal Code definition of robbery, external link

Sexual Assault

A sexual assault is when someone applies force in a sexual manner (or attempts or threatens to apply force) to another person without their consent. 

Read the entire Canadian Criminal Code definition of assault, external link.

Uttering threats


Uttering threats is committed when anyone conveys a threat to cause death or bodily harm, damage to property, or death or injury of an animal that is someone’s property.

Read the entire Canadian Criminal Code definition of uttering threats, external link.

Voyeurism

Voyeurism is committed when anyone attempts to covertly observe or makes a recording of any individual in a circumstance where a reasonable level of privacy is expected, including an individual who is nude and/or engaging in sexual activity.

Read the entire Canadian Criminal Code definition of voyeurism, external link.

Glossary of terms 

When referring to those involved, we use the following terms: 

  • “Ryerson community member” refers to a Ryerson faculty, staff, student or volunteer.
  • “Ryerson community guest” refers to a Ryerson-affiliated guest who has been invited to campus (e.g. a guest speaker, a family member of a student, etc.).
  • “Member of the public” refers to someone who may have been in or around the Ryerson campus but has no university affiliation (i.e. someone who lives or works near to the campus). 

Questions?

If you have any questions or concerns about security incidents or this terminology, please contact us at 416-979-5040 or at security@ryerson.ca.