Racial slur written on 300 Swift resident's door overnight

Shortly after a Snapchat with a racial epithet was exposed through Duke’s meme page, another racially charged incident has struck Duke’s campus. 

A racial slur was written outside the door of a 300 Swift apartment complex resident overnight, wrote Janine Weaver-Douglas, associate dean of Central Campus residence life, in an email to Central Campus residents Friday morning. 

The email said that the incident was reported to the Office of Student Conduct, DukeReach, Duke University Police Department, the dean of students and associate vice president of housing and residence life. 

“To be clear, the epithet that was used, and the overall behavior displayed and exhibited are in direct violation of the community standards set forth by Central Campus, Housing and Residence Life, Duke Community Standards, and Duke University, itself,” Weaver-Douglas wrote. “Behavior and action in this vein are unacceptable on this campus.”

Larry Moneta, vice president for student affairs, said Friday afternoon that he hopes there is no relationship between the two incidents. 

“Wherever derogatory language appears is just distasteful," he said. "I mean, I would repeat some of that, that I find it terribly distasteful and inappropriate."

Moneta also discussed his response to the incident.

“I don’t have a plan for a major initiative,” Moneta said. “You want to be careful—you want to react appropriately and not just run around to do things that have no meaning. I think we need to just sit back and think about what is going on that a few people would feel like that was a good way to behave.”

He noted that he does not believe the incident is reflective of the student body at large.

“As far as we know, it’s just hit-and-run graffiti," Moneta said.

Joe Gonzalez, assistant vice president of student affairs and dean for residential life, wrote in an email Friday afternoon that the epithet has been removed from the resident's door. 

In a Friday night email that was obtained by The Chronicle, further details about the incident were explained. The email was from Lisa Beth Bergene, associate dean of East Campus, to East Campus resident assistants and graduate residents. 

The email specified the racial epithet that was written on the student's door was "n***** lover" and that Bergene's understanding at the time was that no responsible party had been identified yet. Bergene could not be reached for comment in time for publication.

Check back for updates.

Editor’s note: This article was updated on Friday afternoon to include Moneta’s comments and the statement from Gonzalez, and was updated again on Saturday afternoon to include the details about the incident from the Friday night email.


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