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Eastern Michigan University Investigating Racist Graffiti On Campus

Lisa Barry
89.1 WEMU
EMU Senior, Zach Badgerhouse

An investigation is underway into racist graffiti painted on the outside of an Eastern Michigan University Building.

The graffiti has already been removed from the brick wall outside EMU's King Hall, and University officials say they are undertaking a "full and Immediate investigation" into who may be responsible.

EMU senior Zack Badgerhouse said he heard about the racist incident via Twitter and Facebook, so he decided to stage a one-man silent protest.

He vows to stand at the site for as long as he can holding a sign reading, "I need answers."

"African American Students are highly upset and like the sign says, I need answers, we need answers," says Bagerhouse. "What is the administration going to do about this? It’s deeper than just taking it off the wall. I want answers and I want them now."

Credit Lisa Barry
Bagerhouse stands in front of where the graffiti had been written.

Eastern Vice President for Communications Walter Kraft says the university condemns this act in the strongest of terms and are hopeful that security cameras in the nearby area will help provide evidence in tracking down who was responsible for the racist graffiti.

The university sent the following communication out regarding this issue:

A short time ago, we learned that racist graffiti had been spray painted on a wall of King Hall in the courtyard area of the building. The University strongly condemns such a racist and thoughtless act, which runs completely counter to the values and welcoming environment of our highly diverse Eastern Michigan University community. Our Department of Public Safety is undertaking a full and immediate investigation and the graffiti is being quickly removed. We are hopeful that security cameras in the nearby area will help provide evidence pointing to who may have perpetrated this action. We also are seeking any information from individuals who may have spotted anything unusual in the overnight or early morning hours in that area. Rest assured, we will investigate this criminal act to our fullest abilities and will advise our campus community on our progress. Let me reiterate, we condemn this act in the strongest of terms and stand strong in our determination to identify the individual or individuals responsible, and then beyond this to address the broader issues in our community that such an action highlights. If you have any information about this incident, please contact our Department of Public Safety at 734-487-1222.

EDITOR'S NOTE: We have chosen not to publish the picture of the graffiti in an effort to limit the exposure of this hateful message. As always, we welcome your commentary on this and any other matter via e-mail, studio@wemu.org

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— Lisa Barry is a reporter, and host of All Things Considered on 89.1 WEMU. Contact her at 734.487.3363, on twitter @LisaWEMU, or email her lbarryma@emich.edu

Lisa Barry was a reporter, and host of All Things Considered on 89.1 WEMU.
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