UPDATE: Anonymous emails sent to graduate student email lists detailing alleged hate crime

Thursday, February 9, 2017 - 12:05pm

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Following three racist and anti-Semitic emails sent to University of Michigan engineering and computer science students Tuesday night, an anonymous email was sent out Thursday morning to at least one graduate student email list, this time outlining an alleged incident of racism involving the sender, a Black woman, and two white men. The email expressed disgust with the University for failing to address the alleged hate crime with an investigation.

University police, however, say they recieved the email tip a month ago and attempted to contact the sender, to no avail. 

The email — entitled “Pathetic, Outraged and Disgusted!!” reads: “Dear University of Michigan, you have lost my respect!! I don’t want to hear a freaking thing about racist emails!! I love the response that’s coming from the MARK, deans and news stations, but especially UM faculty. All of this concern!! That is complete crap, and let me tell you I am getting sick and tired of it.”

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The email goes on to say: “All of this over an email?? Yet, I give my FACTUAL ACCOUNTS of two white men threatening my life and trying to take my car wearing UM hats. FACTUAL events, that can be seen on 2 cameras that were in the back of a parking long (sic) and yet NO RESPONSE !!!! All of this solidarity, were all American stuff is complete BULL SHIT.”

The email also goes into detail about the alleged incident, where the writer claims on Jan. 3 at 8:15 p.m., she walked out from a gym and was “met by two pickup trucks,” both with white male drivers.

The writer described the white men in detail and later wrote what she claims the men said, including: “‘You’re not leaving tonight you whore, you can’t fucking park here you N****R.’ As I tried to ask him why he was so upset, he begin (sic) to continue the racial slurs shouting, ‘N****R… You fucking N****R can’t you fucking read?’ ‘YOU ARE NOT FUCKING LEAVING TONIGHT!!!’”

The email is simply signed “The White Jane Doe (maybe the name change will help). #SecondofMany”

The writer acknowledged she called the police following the incident. Crime logs released by the Division of Public Safety and Security, however, contain no such report on that date, nor does the Ann Arbor Police Department crime map report an incident. The email did not detail whether the incident occurred on University property or even in Ann Arbor. University spokesman Rick Fitzgerald said DPSS first recieved an email tip on Jan. 5, but neither DPSS nor AAPD recieved such a report on the day the incident allegedly occured. 

"DPSS made every reasonable effort to contact the sender with no succcess," he said. "They could find nothing in our own community. Ann Arbor (police) could find nothing either." 

Fitzgerald noted the only affiliation with the University detailed in the email included the "UM hats" worn by the sender's attackers.

"People could be all around the world in Michigan hats," he said.  

This email references the incidents earlier in the week, where three racist and anti-Semitic emails were sent to the computer science and electrical engineering email lists.

Students protested early Wednesday morning outside University President Mark Schlissel’s house, demanding action from administration. Later, students and faculty responded to Tuesday’s emails, calling them inexcusable. It has been confirmed these emails were “spoofed” and were not sent by either of the named senders, a University professor and graduate student.

The University confirmed it was collaborating with the FBI to determine the original sender of the spoofed emails.

Students responded to the email sent to the graduate student email list on Facebook. One user, Rebecca Ruby Anuru, a Public Health graduate student, responded in support of the Jane Doe email.

Sooo whatever Black woman sent this email to UMich on mad listservs under the name Jane Doe (The White Jane Doe in the text of the email too, savage!), made the email address say ‘educated black student’, and shared her story of how UMich don't give a flaming flying fuck about her and her safety....Thank you, sis. You matter.”

Fitzgerald took care to uncouple the two email incidents, but could not speculate as to the series of anonymous senders. 

"That's the main question, and I don't have answers" he said. "But one is an indivdiual forgery of someone on our campus, (and) the other is someone refusing to identify themselves (to DPSS)." 

This article has been updated to include statements from University spokesman Rick Fitzgerald