Classes were canceled Friday at the University of La Verne in response to “heinous acts” targeting students that may have been racially motivated.

“Over the past two days, the University of La Verne has received two reports of heinous acts targeted at members of our student body,” according to a message posted on the university’s website. “These actions are despicable and are an affront to our values as a university. This is a critical moment for us to declare that we will not tolerate this type of behavior.

“In acknowledgement of these incidents and in support of our students, the University of La Verne will cancel all afternoon and evening classes on the La Verne campus today, Friday, March 1, effective at noon. The pause will also allow the university to assess this evolving situation and continue to cooperate with law enforcement in ongoing criminal investigations.”

The campus closure followed a reported fire in a student’s vehicle Friday morning in a dormitory parking lot. According to police, crews found a “backpack emitting smoke” inside an unlocked vehicle.

The Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, citing an alert sent to students by university administrators, reported that the targeted student “had previously reported receiving race-based threats of violence via social media.”

La Verne police said a student notified university officials Thursday about a threat received on social media.

“The threats, which were brought to the attention of the recipient through an anonymous social media account, are being investigated by the La Verne Police Department to determine the source of the threat,” police said.

Police also said they were trying to determine a link between the social media threat and Friday’s reported car fire.

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