A prominent UCI sign at Crawford Hall, part of the Crawford Athletic Complex. UCI sign at Crawford Hall - the athletic complex.Photo by Allyunion at en.wikipedia [Attribution, CC BY-SA 3.0, GFDL or CC BY-SA 4.0-3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0], from Wikimedia Commons.
A prominent UCI sign at Crawford Hall, part of the Crawford Athletic Complex. UCI sign at Crawford Hall – the athletic complex.Photo by Allyunion at en.wikipedia [Attribution, CC BY-SA 3.0, GFDL or CC BY-SA 4.0-3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0], from Wikimedia Commons.
UC Irvine officials Wednesday rejected the campus’ black student union‘s demands that the university’s police force be disbanded due to allegations of abuse of power.

The organization accused two educators of “interrogating” a black student and buttonholing them into making a “public apology” or else “they would not receive protection against the multitude of death threats and vulgar insults they were receiving day and night from students on UCI’s campus and the citizens of Orange County.”

The organization claimed one student “received multiple emails and phone calls in which people threatened to lynch and rape her.” The group alleged that university officials made her contact information public.

The organization argues that the threats came after the student joined five classmates in voting to pass a resolution banning the displays of flags from any nation in a student government room.

UCI officials denied the claims and praised its police force.

“The UCI Police Department comprises a highly respected team of officers who risk their lives to ensure the safety of our students, faculty and staff,” according to a statement issued by UCI spokeswoman Cathy Lawhon.

“We are proud of them and will continue to support the department.” UCI officials added, “The letter (from the organization) also makes false, malicious accusations against several staff members, many of whom worked diligently to address the BSU’s earlier demands and advance a safe, comfortable environment for all students.

“We stand by these dedicated professionals. UCI’s administration, staff and faculty are committed to a diverse, inclusive environment… We continue to encourage an open, productive dialogue with BSU and remain dedicated to a campus that is safe, inclusive and celebrates diverse cultures and opinions.”

–City News Service

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