Authorities said four white students at San Jose State University
displayed Nazi imagery and a Confederate flag in their dormitory
suite to taunt a black dorm mate and also attempted to hang a
U-shaped bicycle lock around his neck.
The teens barricaded the dorm mate in his room on multiple occasions
in harassment that started in early September and continued through
mid-October of last year, according to the report.
Three of the teens, Colin Warren, 18, Joseph Bomgardner, 19, and
Logan Beaschler, 18, pleaded not guilty in December and January to
one count of a misdemeanor hate crime and one count of misdemeanor
battery against their 17-year-old dorm mate.
A fourth defendant is a minor, and details about his case have not
been made public.
"A lot of these things happened within bedrooms, within suites,
where there just may not have been access," said attorney Myron
Moye, who led the fact-finding task force appointed by university
President Mohammad Qayoumi.
"A combination of (that) and a lack of reporting, I think,
contributed mostly to the timing of these things coming to light."
The report notes that the school waited until November 21 — five
weeks after the incidents came to light — to suspect the students
and discuss the situation with the victim's parents.
"The timing left the impression that the university's senior leaders
were uncaring," the report said.
The victim's parents complained to the university in October, after
visiting the dormitory and seeing a racial slur written on a
dry-erase board, according to the report.
Shortly after the victim's parents complained, a residential
coordinator filed an anonymous report about the harassment to
university police. The department concluded its investigation on
October 30 and sent the case to the Santa Clara district attorney.
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The university came under scrutiny following news reports of the
events later in the fall. Students, upset that the alleged bullying
happened repeatedly without apparent official action, staged campus
A review of the incident could lead to the permanent expulsion of
the students, San Jose State University spokeswoman Pat Harris said.
A leader with the National Association for the Advancement of
Colored People called for the accused boys to be charged with felony
Monday's report, which details the timeline of events and the
actions that school officials and other authorities took in response
to the incidents, will be reviewed by a separate
university-appointed task force led by retired superior court judge
Recommendations will be made to the university on April 30.
"Our purpose is to look at lessons learned," Cordell said. "What
recommendations can we make to this university so that a situation
like this never happens again."
(Editing by Edith Honan and Ken Wills)
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