Content Warning: This article contains descriptions of violence against women as well as racially motivated violence.
The Ann Arbor Police Department is investigating an account of ethnic intimidation and assault against a current U-M student in downtown Ann Arbor on Thursday, according to a University of Michigan Division of Public Safety and Security security bulletin released Friday.
According to DPSS, the attack occurred at approximately 4:22 p.m. on Thursday. The victim was parking her car near Liberty and Divisions Streets when the perpetrator, riding a mountain bike, approached her, screamed racial slurs and punched her in the face. The victim sustained minor injuries to her right eye and declined medical treatment.
The perpetrator was described in the bulletin as a medium-build, middle-aged man wearing a navy ball cap with a yellow block M on it.
The AAPD has not responded to repeated requests from The Michigan Daily for information such as the racial identity of the victim. DPSS did not comment beyond the security bulletin and directed The Daily’s questions to the AAPD.
The assault and ethnic intimidation case comes after a series of three assaults against women, all similar in nature, were reported in downtown Ann Arbor in mid-July. In a since-deleted tweet, DPSS wrote on July 20 that the AAPD had a suspect in custody regarding the three previous attacks. However, the next day the AAPD told The Daily the suspect was in custody for an “unrelated incident” and DPSS acknowledged the inaccuracy of their tweet.
In the security bulletin, DPSS urged Ann Arbor residents and visitors to use caution and be extra vigilant when walking around Ann Arbor, especially at night.
“We advise residents and visitors in Ann Arbor to be extra vigilant and aware of their surroundings when walking around,” the bulletin reads. “Look assertive and trust your intuition. If a particular situation makes you feel uncomfortable or unsafe, choose an alternative. We also recommend walking with a friend or co-worker and avoiding isolated areas.”
Any information regarding this incident, or the incidents from last week, can be reported to DPSS at (734)-763-1131 or the Ann Arbor Police Department Tip Line at (734)-794-6939.
Summer News Editor George Weykamp can be reached at email@example.com.