There’s no better introduction to this post than this tweet:

Now we’ve heard all sorts of panic at U.S. universities about nooses being hung to frighten and intimidate minorities, and usually, these turn out to be hoaxes or just cases of mistaken identity. One was a shoelace “packaged in a way that someone could perceive them to look similar to a noose.” Another was a lightning cable that broke loose after a tree limb fell on it. The “nooses” found at the University of Delaware after Katie Pavlich’s speech weren’t nooses at all, but actually string and wire hangars for paper lanterns hung from the trees during an earlier event.

But in this latest case, a 19-year-old allegedly found a piece of rope in a residence hall elevator, tied it into a noose, and was arrested and released on $5,000 bond.

NBC News (or, more precisely, NBCBLK reports:

A 19-year-old student at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign has been charged with a felony hate crime after a noose was found hanging in a residence hall elevator Sunday.

Andrew Smith was arrested at about 9:30 p.m. Monday after he was questioned by authorities at his residence hall on College Court in Urbana, the university police said in a statement.

He was charged with committing a hate crime, which is a felony, and a misdemeanor count of disorderly conduct.

During an arraignment Tuesday afternoon, Champaign County Assistant State’s Attorney Kristin Alferink said Smith found some rope in an elevator in Allen Hall over the weekend and tied it into a noose.

About 1 a.m. Sunday, staff at Allen Hall found the noose hanging inside an elevator in a public area of the building. A female friend who was with Smith in the elevator Sunday reported him to authorities, Alferink said.

Smith pleaded not guilty Tuesday and was released on a $5,000 bond. He requested a trial by jury.

That was a felony hate crime?

It was a hate crime, duh.

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