Flint police investigating racist graffiti, threats against Kettering University students

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FLINT (WJRT) (03/12/2018) - Four incidents of threats and racist graffiti found on the Kettering University campus have police searching for answers and students supporting one another.

All four reports have come within the past five days.

The first involved racist graffiti found in a restroom inside Thompson Hall on Thursday. Names of freshman students, all of whom are African American, were attached to the graffiti.

University President Robert McMahan released a letter calling the graffiti "simply, in the strongest possible language, unacceptable."

A second letter was sent out to students on Sunday after more graffiti was found.

The third incident came Monday morning, when a threatening note was slipped under the dorm room door of a freshman student in Thompson Hall. The note lists the names included on the restroom graffiti.

A fourth incident happened later Monday.

"It's very disturbing. That's not something we promote, that's not something we tolerate and we're going to treat it as such," said LB McCune, the associate dean of students at Kettering University.

Paris Scales, the vice president of the National Society of Black Engineers at Kettering, showed solidarity with the students targeted by the racist epithets.

"While we see the greatness in these students, and they also see this greatness, and they're attacking that greatness and it's just heartbreaking," she said.

Paul Crane, Kettering's director of campus safety, has reached out to the Flint Police Department for assistance investigating the incidents.

"We take any threat or any situation like this seriously," he said. "Here at a university, we make sure our students are safe and feel safe."

Flint Police Department Det. Tyrone Booth declined to comment on the investigation while it is ongoing.

Meanwhile, Kettering University administrators are looking into possibly relocating the affected students to off-campus housing, providing assistance for traveling on campus and stationing a police officer in Thompson Hall 24/7.

"Our first priority is safety of students and staff and faculty," said McCune.

A town hall meeting for the entire campus was scheduled for Tuesday morning, but officials canceled it so police could continue their investigation.

Campus police have also set up a tip line at 810-762-9565. Anyone with information on who is making the threats is asked to call.

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