University of Wisconsin Police Department is investigating graffiti found in the first floor men’s bathroom Monday at The Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery.
The graffiti, depicting a person hanging from a tree, is one of several incidents of hate and bias reported on campus, and is the most recent one UWPD has investigated.
The graffiti incident is believed to have occurred sometime between 3:30 and 7 p.m., Marc Lovicott, UWPD spokesperson, said.
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UWPD has been examining nearby cameras in the WID, but Lovicott said it is difficult to determine who may have committed the crime simply by looking at when a person entered the bathroom during that time period.
UWPD currently is trying to gather any relevant information from the public to identify the perpetrator.
“The fact that we had an individual who drew graffiti like this in one of our campus buildings is beyond troubling and very disappointing,” Lovicott said.
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UWPD also investigated a recent altercation between 19-year-old Matthew Hsieh and members of the First Wave multicultural community in Sellery Hall. After conducting interviews and scrutinizing video from police body cameras, UWPD determined the incident had not been related to racial discrimination, Lovicott said.
Lovicott said while Hsieh will not face criminal or hate crime charges, he still received two citations — one for disorderly conduct and the second for underage drinking.
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After the string of recent incidents of hate and bias on campus, Lovicott said it’s hard to determine whether the incidents are increasing or whether the level of awareness about these incidents has increased.
“It’s hard to say if we are just noticing it more or whether we are seeing an increase — they shouldn’t be happening at all,” Lovicott said. “But whatever the case is, it’s extremely disappointing and extremely troubling.”