By Ben Warwick

GREELEY, Colo. (CBS4) – Greeley Police are investigating a hate crime that occurred against a University of Northern Colorado student. The assault happened off campus on August 22nd.

The investigation is in the early stages, and information is limited, but reports given to the university suggest a racially-motivated crime.

UNC Police and Greeley Police are working together to investigate the crime and locate those responsible.

“Incidents motivated by racism and hate are incongruent with our values as a university community,” UNC President Andy Feinstein said in a statement. “We are even more heartbroken that this has happened at the start of the all semester, when it proves more important than ever that we each look out for one another to protect the health and safety of our fellow Bears. In the midst of a global pandemic that threatens our welfare and that of our families, we must not lose sight of the very real threats posed by discrimination, hate, and racism, as well as the violent and oftentimes more subtle ways that they manifest in the actions of individuals and institutions.”

The university’s president, Andy Feinstein, released a statement which reads in part:

Incidents motivated by racism and hate are incongruent with our values as a university community. We are even more heartbroken that this has happened at the start of the all semester, when it proves more important than ever that we each look out for one another to protect the health and safety of our fellow Bears. In the midst of a global pandemic that threatens our welfare and that of our families, we must not lose sight of the very real threats posed by discrimination, hate, and racism, as well as the violent and oftentimes more subtle ways that they manifest in the actions of individuals and institutions.

Far too many Bears live in fear of being a target of discrimination, hate, or violence. We have been working closely with other members of our community to identify and implement measures to more completely honor UNC’s commitments to diversity, equity, and inclusion, particularly over these last few months. We must continue to press ahead with this work and make meaningful progress in ensuring that we live up to these values not just in our words, but in our actions—individually and collectively.

Hate crimes such as this one affect our community in ways that reach well beyond the individuals who are most directly harmed. The stress and anxiety felt by other students who feel vulnerable because of their identities has a compounding effect. Services such as counseling  are available to the entire campus community, even as our operations are changed due to COVID-19, and it’s important that you report a concern so that we can take action and provide help.

Our campus community has come together in many ways over the past year, and we must remain strong in service and support to each other.

Ben Warwick

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