Police said Thursday that a student was arrested and charged with a hate crime after allegedly painting a swastika on the edge of the University of Connecticut University building.
Christopher Piper, 21, a junior from Anfield, Connecticut, was arrested on Thursday on terrorism charges of bigotry or bias, according to a police press release issued by the school to the United States today.
Police identified him as a person interested in swastika paint on the UConn chemistry building just across the street from the school’s Hillel branch, a Jewish university organization with members from around the world. Piper allegedly painted the Nazi symbol on the first day of March, March 27.
A few days later, another swastika, a separate Nazi symbol, was painted near the Austin building, a short distance from the Chemistry building. Although the police believe that the cases are connected, Piper was accused only of being the first to shoot, reports The Hartford Courant.
Police say they linked Piper to the first swastika using a campus university surveillance system, arrows from his ID և Wi-Fi hotspots identifying his phone in the area, according to a U.S. arrest warrant issued today. command:
After seizing his cell phone, police said in a verdict that pictures of the swastika were found in the Austin building, both satirical and painted.
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During the interrogation, Piper wrote a 10-page statement apologizing to the Hillel community, saying that he was outraged by certain Jewish religious practices.
“I do not hate the Jews, I am critical of them,” the letter reads, according to the verdict.
Piper is also facing university sanctions, but the school declined to say what they were, citing federal privacy laws.
Thomas Catsuleas, president of UConn, said the spray painting was “a vicious act” that “caused deep concern for our community” in a letter to students և the community on Thursday.
“Every member of our community – students, faculty, staff, alumni – guests – deserves to feel safe and respected at UConn,” he wrote. “Anyone who violates this principle contradicts the values that exist at this university.
UConn has determined that the total cost of removing the Nazi symbols is $ 260.
UConn Hillel CEO Edina Estricher said there had been seven anti-Semitic incidents at the university this academic year, including graffiti, and at least one attack on a Jewish student who was attacked by several people on their way home from Passover. “Seder,” he said.
Contributed to the Associated Press
This article originally appeared in the USA TODAY. Police say a UConn student was arrested after painting a swastika on the building