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Published October 01, 2010, 01:52 PM

Crookston Police Investigate Possible Racial Statue

Crookston Police are investigating a wooden statue that resembled an African American was suspended by the waist above the Sargent Student Center at the University of Minnesota Crookston Thursday morning.

Crookston Police and the University of Minnesota Crookston are investigating a statue found hanging over their Student Center as a possible racial hate-crime. University Officials say that on-campus students and staff are more puzzled about the situation than upset. Nothing like this has happened at the university before.

Police and University of Minnesota Crookston Security are investigating a wooden statue that resembled an "African American" that was found hanging over the student center early Thursday morning.

"This is the first kind of incident we have had like this at the U-M-C Campus. U-M-C is a very cultural diverse campus we have students from around the world that attend there," said Chief Tim Motherway of the Crookston Police.

Right behind me is where the statue was suspended. The statue was suspended right over the main doors of the Sergent Student Center right in the middle of campus.

"We take something like this very seriously, we have a very diverse student body a lot of international students and students from 40 states and students of all different cultures here," said Andrew Svec with U-M-C Public Relations.

Later that afternoon Chancellor Charles Casey sent out an email to the entire school stating that actions like this are not tolerated. U-M-C Officials say Faculty and students are trying to figure out the intention of the act.

"The reaction form campus has been trying to understand the point of this trying to understand what was meant who ever did this what were they trying to say who did this if any," Svec said.

Police say they are doing everything in their power to make sure that find the people who did this.

"Were taking this seriously as well as the U-M-C and were going to do everything we can to find out who's responsible for this and find out what their motivation was and take appropriate action from there," Motherway said.

Police are trying to determine if this was a joke or a racial attack.