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UNC Asheville went into lockdown after threat BLM mural threat

The University of North Carolina Asheville campus went into lockdown the morning of October 9 after the college received a threat demanding that the campus’s Black Lives Matter mural be painted over, according to UNC Asheville’s BulldogAlert.

The morning after receiving the threatening email, the university instructed its faculty, staff, and students to “shelter in place” while telling non-essential workers to head home. As a result, all classes — both in-person and virtual — were cancelled.

Federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies investigated the threat until the lockdown orders were lifted almost 10 hours later. The school will still keep a “vigilant police presence” on the campus for the next few days, according to a video update by UNC Asheville Chancellor Nancy J. Cable.

The email threat did not mention anyone specifically, although details about the threat have not been released.

“The impact on our academic community has been very significant,” Cable said in the video. “This has been an exceedingly difficult day for our UNCA academic community, our students, our faculty, our staff.

Cable is asking faculty and students to remain “vigilant” as they continue their investigation.

“We remain fully committed to our University values of diversity, equity and inclusion,” Cable said in a statement in the final BulldogAlert update. “Black Lives Matter. This is about our University values that respect our students’ first amendment rights to express their views about the pain and sadness at the senseless loss of so many lives.”

According to a report by ABC 13 News, lead organizer of Asheville’s Black Lives Matter group Delores Venable — who was “disturbed but not deterred” — said that the threat to the campus was meant to “instill fear.”

“I think we live in a society where we know that Black Lives Matter is more than paint on the street,” Venable told ABC 13 News. “It’s a movement that has people in it, so doing acts like that doesn’t stop the movement.”

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Shelter in place lifted after a threat over its Black Lives Matter mural

A “shelter in place” order at the University of North Carolina Asheville was lifted Friday evening after the university received a threatening email demanding that a Black Lives Matter mural on campus be painted over.



a car parked on the side of a road: Entrances to the UNC Asheville campus are blocked Friday after the campus is locked down over an emailed threat demanding the university paint over a Black Lives Matter mural.


© Angeli Wright/Asheville Citizen-Times/USA Today Network
Entrances to the UNC Asheville campus are blocked Friday after the campus is locked down over an emailed threat demanding the university paint over a Black Lives Matter mural.

The university announced Friday morning that it was canceling all classes and campus activities for the day, advising residential students to stay in place and nonessential personnel to return home.

Chancellor Nancy J. Cable said in a statement that the order was lifted at 7 p.m. Friday “in consultation with federal, state, and local law enforcement.”

“Today has been a challenging time for UNC Asheville and I am grateful for your support and cooperation,” Cable said. “I encourage every member of our campus community to remain vigilant. Please take care of one another. We remain fully committed to our University values of diversity, equity and inclusion. Black Lives Matter.”

A safety alert sent by the university just after 8:30 a.m. Friday said that “several offices at the University received an email communicating a direct threat to members of the UNC Asheville community. The email demanded that the Black Lives Matter mural on University Heights on campus be painted over.”

“A decision has been made to send a Bulldog Alert to all faculty, staff, and students to shelter in place until further notice. We ask that employees, other than essential personnel, stay away from campus today.”

The university did not specify the details of the threat, but said in the alert that it would continue to update the campus community. Officials said the campus would remain closed at least until Saturday morning.

In another safety alert later on Friday afternoon, university officials said multiple law enforcement agencies were investigating the threat, along with campus police.

UNC Asheville is part of the state’s multi-campus public university system and has about 3,600 students, according to its website.

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Students told shelter in place after a threat over its Black Lives Matter mural

The University of North Carolina Asheville is under a “shelter in place” order as of Friday afternoon after the university received a threatening email demanding that a Black Lives Matter mural on campus be painted over.



a car parked on the side of a road: Entrances to the UNC Asheville campus are blocked Friday after the campus is locked down over an emailed threat demanding the university paint over a Black Lives Matter mural.


© Angeli Wright/Asheville Citizen-Times/USA Today Network
Entrances to the UNC Asheville campus are blocked Friday after the campus is locked down over an emailed threat demanding the university paint over a Black Lives Matter mural.

The university announced Friday morning that it was canceling all classes and campus activities for the day, advising residential students to stay in place and nonessential personnel to return home.

“During the night several offices at the University received an email communicating a direct threat to members of the UNC Asheville community. The email demanded that the Black Lives Matter mural on University Heights on campus be painted over,” according to a safety alert sent by the university just after 8:30 a.m.

“A decision has been made to send a Bulldog Alert to all faculty, staff, and students to shelter in place until further notice. We ask that employees, other than essential personnel, stay away from campus today.”

The university did not specify the details of the threat, but said in the alert that it would continue to update the campus community. Officials said the campus would remain closed at least until Saturday morning.

In another safety alert later on Friday afternoon, university officials said multiple law enforcement agencies were investigating the threat, along with campus police.

UNC Asheville is part of the state’s multi-campus public university system and has about 3,600 students, according to its website.

Continue Reading

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