Authorities in Washtenaw County, Michigan arraigned a 29-year-old Black man for three racial graffiti incidents on the Eastern Michigan University campus during the Fall 2016 semester, according to a statement from the university.
Eddie Curlin, a former student at Eastern, is already serving a one-to-five year sentence for an unrelated charge of receiving and concealing stolen property.
The three incidents rocked the campus, sparking anti-racism protests and a series of initiatives from the administration to promote inclusiveness. In the first incident, the letters “KKK” were spray-painted in red, white and blue letters, along with the message “Leave N***ers” on a campus building.
“As a Black student, to know that another Black person is using the N-word in a negative way is embarrassing,” Jaiquae Rodwell, an EMU student, told The Eastern Echo, the student newspaper.
EMU’s Chief of Police Robert Heighes told The Echo that Curlin acted alone, but his motive is unclear. “It was totally self-serving, it was not driven by politics and it was not driven by race,” he said.
While it’s rare, members of targeted minorities are sometimes found to be responsible for apparent hate crimes against their own group.
Here are three cases:
—Police arrested Andrew McClinton for the arson of Hopewell Missionary Baptist Church, an African-American church in Greenville, Mississippi. The words “Vote Trump” were also spray-painted on the side of the church, NPR reported.
—According to CBS News New York, Israeli police arrested a 19-year-old Jewish man for calling in bomb threats to dozens of Jewish community centers in the United States.
—A 44-year-old Black man was charged for posting signs with hate messages outside a predominantly Black church. One of them read, “Black men beware, you are the target.” Another one simply read “KKK,” CBS News Denver reported.