UW-Parkside looking into hate crimes and racial threats toward students
Annie Scholz reports Video by tmj4.comvideo
SOMERS - Fear and frustration Thursday night on a local college campus after hate crimes and racial threats against students. And we're learning it could be getting worse.
First, a noose was found in a residence hall Wednesday, then Thursday, a sobbing student told TODAY'S TMJ4 he just handed a list to an adviser. It had the names of several African-American students on it and a message that they would die.
Students and staff are outraged over a series of racially motivated hate crimes at UW-Parkside. A noose was found Wednesday at Pike River Suites Residence Hall. Then Thursday morning, the student who reported it received a threatening note.
"I'm infuriated. I'll admit that. Like totally.," said Holly Oestreich.
Meanwhile, junior Chris Lynn told TODAY'S TMJ4, "I need to come in here and do my work and feel like I can leave without getting lynched in my car."
School officials are meeting with students to address their concerns. They've also brought in officers from other departments to beef up the police presence.
"It saddens me to see my fellow peers terrified to stay on this campus and we're all here for the same common reason, and that's education," said Crystal Sims of the Black Student Union.
Dr. Cindy Graham, interim dean of students said, "Parkside will not tolerate any kind of bias, any kind of hate."
Students showed their solidarity by wearing "respect" t-shirts. Something they will not stop fighting to bring back to their campus.
TODAY'S TMJ4 was told there are no surveillance cameras in the area where the noose was found, but that's not stopping school officials from saying they'll get the person who did this. They are meeting with students again Thursday night to discuss their concerns about all of this.