EMU offers $5K for tips in racist graffiti cases

Mark Hicks
The Detroit News

Eastern Michigan University is offering a $5,000 reward for tips leading to the arrest of those involved in racist messages on campus buildings last week.

Also, the FBI and state officials are helping the school investigate the incidents, EMU said Thursday.

“As I have said from the beginning of this investigation, we are committing the full resources of our university behind finding the people or persons involved,” EMU President James Smith said in a statement. “There is no place on Eastern’s campus for such hateful and intentional acts, and we will continue to investigate until they are solved. These incidents have struck fear into many of our students and the most effective way for us to address this is by apprehending those responsible and ensuring they are punished to the fullest extent of the law.”

Both incidents were reported about a day apart.

On Sept. 20, graffiti was found painted on the side of King Hall that included the letters “KKK” painted in red, white and blue and “Leave N****RS,” administrators said. The writing, which followed the police shooting of an unarmed black man in Tulsa, Oklahoma, sparked outrage, including a Black Lives Matter protest that attracted about 100 students.

Then, the next day, officials inspecting the campus found a slur scrawled on a stairwell wall at Wise Hall, a dormitory.

Anyone with information related to the cases is asked to call EMU Police at (734) 487-6895 or its tip line: (734) 487-4847.

Meanwhile, school officials have worked to address concerns. Among the measures: Police patrols were expanded and an anonymous electronic feedback form has been launched.