The Slatest

University of Chicago Threat Cited Need to Avenge Laquan McDonald

The University of Chicago in Hyde Park.   

Update, 2:00 p.m.: The University of Illinois at Chicago says in a statement that one of its students has been arrested for the threat against the University of Chicago described below. Per the Chicago Tribune, the threat specifically involved a vow, made in the comment section of the WorldStarHipHop site, to kill white students in retaliation for the 2014 death of Chicago resident Laquan McDonald at the hands of a white police officer. The racial background of the student who was arrested has not been disclosed.

Original post, 9:51 a.m.: The University of Chicago has canceled classes and closed facilities at its main campus in the Hyde Park neighborhood after the FBI passed on information about a threat of a gun attack. From a statement sent out by the university last night:

The University was informed by FBI counterterrorism officials today (Sunday) that an unknown individual posted an online threat of gun violence against the University of Chicago, specifically mentioning “the campus quad” on Monday morning at 10 a.m. Based on the FBI’s assessment of this threat and recent tragic events at other campuses across the country, we have decided in consultation with federal and local law enforcement officials, to exercise caution by canceling all classes and activities on the Hyde Park campus through midnight on Monday. All non-medical faculty, students and non-essential staff are asked not to come to the Hyde Park campus on Monday, or to remain indoors as much as possible if they are on campus. Students in College Housing are asked to stay indoors and await direct communication from College Housing Staff.

A number of students and a professor were shot and killed on Oct. 2 by a student at Umpqua Community College in Oregon; six University of California–Santa Barbara students were killed, three by gunshots, near that school’s campus on May 23, 2014, by a nonstudent attacker. Earlier this month, two college students in Missouri were arrested for making violent threats against University of Missouri students.