More racist graffiti found scrawled on EMU building

Holly Fournier
The Detroit News

More racist graffiti has been discovered at Eastern Michigan University, a month after two incidents prompted FBI involvement and at least one campus protest.

The words “Leave N******” was found Monday morning on the east exterior wall of Ford Hall, a building that houses classrooms on the south end of campus near Cross Street, according to university officials. The 5-foot-wide message was scrawled in black lettering on two lines.

EMU police responded and immediately removed the paint, according to university president Jim Smith. It is not yet known if surveillance footage is available in the area.

“But the investigation of the incident will receive the full attention of the EMU Police,” Smith said.

The report comes about a month after two separate pieces of racist graffiti sparked outrage on campus, including one piece of graffiti bearing the same message as Monday’s discovery.

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 at the time. King Hall hosts human resources, WEMU, the women’s center and women’s commission, according to the university website.

That writing prompted a Black Lives Matter protest that attracted about 100 students.

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

“There is no place on our campus for these kinds of hateful actions and I am deeply angry and saddened that it occurred,” Smith said Monday. “Our police officers continue to investigate the incidents in late September. They have responded to many tips and continue to actively pursue them.”

A $10,000 reward is being offered for information about any of the three cases, Smith said. That reward is doubled from one offered last month.

Tipsters are urged to contact EMU Police at 734-487-1222 or the tip line at 734-487-4847.

“The deeper and systemic issues that are behind these incidents continue to be a focus for our student leaders, our faculty, our administration and all who care about this institution and the welfare of our students,” Smith said. “These incidents run counter to the values and mission of the University and our actions over the past several weeks and going forth have and will continue to reflect that.”

The administration has developed a website to act as an “resource for ongoing updates and information,” Smith said. There also will be a forum held this week, with a date, time and location to be determined.

Students also may use an anonymous feedback form provided by the university, or visit The Intersection, a social justice centered lounge at 266 Student Center.

“I am personally angered and saddened, and want to convey my strong sense of resolve in finding out who is behind these incidents and in continuing to come together as a campus community to confront hate and racism, and promote an environment of mutual understanding and inclusion,” Smith said.

(313) 223-4616