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Home / US / Two people accused of vandalizing a University of North Carolina monument dedicated to slaves are arrested

Two people accused of vandalizing a University of North Carolina monument dedicated to slaves are arrested



Ryan Francis Barnett, 31, and Nancy Rushton McCorkle, 50, were arrested by UNC police on Monday. They were accused of denigrating the Unsung Founders Memorial on the morning of March 31 on the Chapel Hill campus.

The monument was defaced with "racist and other unfortunate language," intergovernmental chancellor Kevin M. Guskiewicz said in a message posted on the University's website. The monument has since been cleaned, he said.

Barnett is also accused of vandalizing an outdoor art installation near the university's Hanes Art Center, police said. It was blurred with "hate-filled sayings and racist insults," Guskiewicz said.

"The majority of the blurring was graffiti," said Randy B. Young, UNC press secretary, in an email to CNN.

The vandalism occurred during a school year in which a separate statute on campus ̵
1; a Confederate monument called "Silent Sam" – was overthrown by protesters. San Francisco, NC, and McCorkle Barnett (19659003) According to the UNC police, charges of vandalism and ethnic intimidation were arrested in Newberry, South Carolina. Barnett was also exposed to a preliminary indictment for public urination, the reports said.

The arrest reports do not say how Barnett and McCorkle became suspects in Unsung Founders Memorial vandalism. The police investigating the incident had been investigating surveillance material, CNN member WRAL reported.

CNN's attempts to reach Barnett and McCorkle for comments were not immediately successful. Barnett is scheduled to appear in court on April 22, and McCorkle is due to appear on April 25, according to arrest reports.

The Unsung Founders Memorial, a gift of the class of 2002, has its basic sculptures of men and men women with upraised arms that essentially uphold the rest of the piece.

  The Unsung Founders Memorial, on the campus of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in an undated photo before the vandalism of March 31.
His inscription reads: "The class of 2002 honors the unsung founders of the university – the people of color-binding and freedom – who helped build the Carolina we cherish today."

The school says the Unsung Founders Memorial is a counterpoint to the Silent Sam Confederate Memorial, which made its own headlines in recent months.

In August, protesters stormed the Silent Sam statue into a larger national conversation about the purpose and necessity of Confederation monuments.
The statue was not returned to its original location, and in January, the University removed the remainder of the Confederation monument and moved its base and plaques to an unknown location. The then Chancellor of the University said that the presence of the monument was too controversial and caused too many disturbances.

Silent Sam is the nickname of the statue of a Confederate soldier, built at the request of the United Confederate Daughters. It was dedicated in 1913 to remember the "Sons of the University who died for their beloved Southland between 1861 and 1865," says the UNC website.

The governing council of the university system has granted the Chapel Hill campus until May to decide what to do with the Silent Sam statue, the News & Observer newspaper in Raleigh reported last month. This deadline came after the Board in December rejected a proposal to build a US $ 5.3 million building for the Confederate Monument.

CNir's Amir Vera contributed to this report.


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