U of Minnesota student arrested for drawing swastika in dorm

Marcy Oster

(JTA)– A University of Minnesota student was arrested for allegedly vandalizing a dormitory with anti-Semitic graffiti.

The student, 18, was arrested on Thursday. He allegedly drew a swastika on a desk in a public area of the residence hall in which he lives. University officials have called the incident a “bias crime,” the Minnesota Star-Tribune reported.

The student was identified as Matthew Gruber of St. Cloud, Minnesota. He was released from custody and has not yet been formally charged, the local CBS affiliate WCCO reported. He reportedly will be charged with criminal damage to property with bias.

“UMPD takes incidents and reports of bias related crime very seriously. These cases are comprehensively and completely investigated,” the campus police told the local ABC affiliate, KSTP.

The dormitory swastika incident, which was reported to police on Feb. 7, is one of at least seven cases of anti-Semitic graffiti or propaganda reported to the university’s Bias Response and Referral Network since the beginning of December, according to the Star-Tribune.

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On Friday, a flier bearing two swastikas was taped to a pole on campus. The flier advertised the neo-Nazi website, The Daily Stormer.

The flier read: “White man are you sick and tired of the Jews destroying your country through mass immigration and degeneration … join us in the struggle for global white supremacy at the Daily Stormer.”

Earlier this month, a University of Minnesota student found a swastika and a picture of a concentration camp with the words “Nazis Rule” drawn on a white board on his dorm room.

“The University of Minnesota condemns all acts of hate on our campus. “We are a community that values respect, inclusion and diversity. Hate is not welcome here,” the university said in a statement.

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