Campus race hoaxes are common and are usually meant to serve a specific purpose. Sometimes, the hoax perpetrators are doing it as a preface to issuing demands. In other instances, it’s meant to advance a political narrative. In a recent case at the University of Maryland, it appears to be the actions of an angry employee.

Robby Soave of Reason reports that this is the second recent hoax of its kind:

Another Hate Crime at the University of Maryland Turns Out to Be a Hoax

Racially charged graffiti—including a swastika—was found in a men’s bathroom at the University of Maryland last fall and reported to the authorities as a hate crime.

That case is now solved. The perpetrator was Terrell Demonte Alexander, an 18-year-old former university employee. According to The College Fix, Alexander is black—which suggests this incident was a hoax, or at the least an act of intimidation committed by a member of the targeted minority group.

It’s the second such deceptive case at the university in the past few months. Last October, police arrested Ronald Alford, a 52-year-old black former employee, for spray-painting a swastika on campus. At the University of Maryland, workplace grievances seem to be more important motivators of bias incidents than racism.

Jessie Campisi of the student newspaper The Diamondback has more:

Former UMD employee charged in hate bias incidents in North Campus Dining Hall

University Police charged Terrell Demonte Alexander, 18, from Lanham, in connection with “racially charged writings” found in the men’s bathroom of the North Campus Dining Hall in October and November, according to a news release. Alexander was also charged with property damage to certain classes of persons or groups in the incidents…

Handwriting samples and photos of the graffiti were later submitted to the Maryland State Police Forensic Science Division, and Alexander was connected to the graffiti, the news release said.

“We take incidents of hate-bias in our community very seriously, which is reflected in the extensive effort to identify the individual responsible,” University Police Chief David Mitchell said in a statement. “Thanks to our officers, who spent many hours reviewing video footage and interviewing potential witnesses, to Maryland State Police Forensic Science Division, who analyzed handwriting samples and to the university’s Dining Services for their attentive proactive response towards the incidents.”

Hoaxes like this diminish the impact of real incidents of racism. It’s a point that seems repeatedly lost on those who carry out such acts.

Featured image via YouTube.


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