Swastika vandalism found in campus buildings; UI Employee dismissed for leaving noose
May 6, 2016
A University Massmail was sent to inform the campus community that swastikas had been drawn and found in three location Thursday.
The symbols were taken down in Lincoln Hall, Gregory Hall and the Armory. A probationary UI employee was also dismissed for creating and leaving a noose in a work area, according to the release.
Within an hour of discovering the vandalism, the Facilities and Services staff worked with the University of Illinois Police Department to remove the swastikas.
“We took the reports as soon as we received them, and F&S removed the vandalism as soon as we finished taking the reports,” UIPD spokesperson Patrick Wade said.
University police said the incident occurred between 7 a.m. and 8 a.m. in Lincoln Hall, between 7 a.m. and 2 p.m. in Gregory Hall and in between 8 a.m. and 8:30 a.m. in the Armory.
Police are currently investigating and reviewing the security camera footage. The Massmail said that incidences such as these may result in disciplinary actions or criminal prosecution.
Wade said the probability of finding the suspect ranges, compared to past cases.
“In some cases, there are witnesses or we happen to have good security camera footage of the incident. In other incidents, that’s not the case. It depends a lot on when and where the vandalism occurred,” Wade said.
Because police believe these incidents occurred during times people would be moving through these buildings, they encourage anyone with information to contact UIPD.
“The more information we have about an incident, the more likely we are to identify the offender,” Wade said.
According to the Massmail, a separate situation occurred where an employee created and left a noose at a table in a work area. They later admitted to being responsible for creating the noose and was promptly dismissed from the University.1
The Massmail, signed by Interim Chancellor Barbara Wilson, Provost Edward Feser and Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Renee Romano, said this year alone they have seen many threatening posts and actions directed towards specific groups and that they “do not advance legitimate discourse and debate.”
“This academic year we’ve seen threatening anonymous Facebook posts directed at our African American students and demeaning chalkings targeting Latinas and Latinos,” the Massmail said. “We condemn acts like these that are intended to intimidate particular groups.”
The message called for a conclusion of the year with a more welcoming and supportive campus.
“Let’s conclude this year with a steadfast commitment to being welcoming and supportive of each other,” the massmail said. “and to demonstrating – with our words and acts – what it means to be a member of the Illinois family.”
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