An investigation was opened the University of Nebraska at Omaha last week after anti-Semitic graffiti was found in a second floor men’s bathroom in Arts and Sciences Hall Thursday.
A UNO faculty member found the graffiti which consisted of a swastika carved into the bathroom wall, a racial slur and “Make America great again,” UNO Police Chief Charlotte Evans and Assistant Chief Mike Murphy told the Omaha World Herald.
A Public Safety report filed on the vandalism says photographs were taken of the graffiti before it was removed from the wall.
The case is listed as “open” in Public Safety’s daily public information log. Evans told the World Herald an investigation is currently underway. There are no suspects at this time. Hallway video footage is being reviewed as part of the investigation.
Evans told the World Herald the person responsible for the graffiti could be charged with destruction of property and vandalism at the very least. Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs Dan Shipp said it could potentially be a hate crime, but the exact charges will be determined by Public Safety.
The vandalism took place only a few weeks after Chancellor Christensen sent out a campus-wide email, following the presidential election, assuring students that UNO’s campus has been and will continue to be a safe place and where hostility and harassment will not be tolerated.
Shipp echoed the chancellor’s email and added that many campuses around the country have been “facing similar realities these days.”
“The chancellor’s recent all-campus email was a reminder to all of us that there is no place for acts of bias and/or hate here at UNO,” Shipp said. “An important part of being a Maverick is learning to treat others with respect, even if you disagree with them, come from a different background or have a different belief system.”
Student Body President Patrick Davlin agrees UNO is not a place of discrimination or intolerance.
“I don’t think those kind of actions have a place at UNO,” Davlin said. “We are a tolerant, supportive community and there’s no room for hate on our campus.”
Shipp also said UNO is similar to all communities because it has good and bad days “when it comes to individual conduct and criminal activity.”
Shipp encourages community members to “say something if they see something” in order to help maintain a safe and welcoming campus environment. On campus safety resources include the Public Safety office as well as the student safety website.
‘We have many faculty and staff working 24/7 to respond to concerns in support of campus safety,” Shipp said. “I assure you that we take this part of our jobs very seriously.”