Glue gun prompts 'profiling' concerns at Colgate University
The president of Colgate University is accusing campus police of “implicit racial bias” and “profiling” for instituting a lockdown following reports of an armed individual entering the student center.
The lockdown took effect immediately Monday evening after campus authorities received a report claiming someone “entered the O’Connor Campus Center while carrying what witnesses believed was a weapon,” according to university spokesman Daniel DeVries.
After hours of confusion, officers determined that the report was referring to a black student using a hot glue gun for an art project.
“After thorough investigation, and with the assistance of the person in question, law enforcement identified the individual as a student who was using a glue gun for an art project, confirmed the misunderstanding, and released the campus from lockdown,” reads the official university statement.
University President Brian Casey also released a separate statement bemoaning the “implicit racial bias” that he claims led to “profiling,” even declaring that he had asked Campus Safety Director Bill Ferguson to take an administrative leave while the school conducts a review of the incident.
“It is important that we understand the role that implicit racial bias had in the initial reporting of and responses to the events of last night. I want to make sure we speak with those who made and received the initial report to understand the role this played," Casey stated.
“More egregiously, perhaps, was the effect profiling had on the response of safety officers and other university offices to these events,” he added, referencing “communication and enforcement steps” that he believes “confused and harmed this campus and our students.”
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