FGCU police may have identified person behind anti-Semitic signs

Pamela McCabe
 
| Fort Myers News-Press

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Florida Gulf Coast University students move back to campus, prepare for ‘new normal’

Students move back to campus amid coronavirus pandemic.

Florida Gulf Coast University police believe they have identified the person who put anti-Semitic signs around campus last weekend.

The person does not appear to be affiliated with the Fort Myers school, but will be given a trespass warning, according to FGCU president Mike Martin.

Martin made the announcement Thursday in an email update to students and employees after three posters promoting neo-Nazi propaganda were found on campus.

Similar fliers have been put up at other college campuses across the United States and Canada, including the University of Central Florida, he said.

Posters purporting to be from Folksfront, a National Socialist political organization based primarily out of North America, were found on campus buildings, two of them at Edwards Hall and one at Marieb Hall.

Martin had called the posters deeply offensive in a  message on the FGCU Facebook page last weekend.

“To be clear, this is anathema to the values, standards and conduct of our university community. If the responsible party(ies) are discovered to be associated with FGCU, that association will end immediately,” Martin’s message, also sent to faculty, said. “If we discover this is the work of outsiders, we will send the unambiguous warning they are not welcome on this campus.”

Martin said in his email Thursday that campus police “believes it has identified the person responsible” for hanging the signs. The signs proclaimed the messages “Hitler Is Right” and “Smash White Guilt.”

Acting on a tip, the on-campus police department reviewed images from the university’s License Plate Recognition system. Officials “determined the individual” was on campus Saturday during the suspected time.

“The person is not affiliated with FGCU and is not a current or former student or employee,” Martin stated.

The individual, who was not named in the message, will be issued a trespass warning for the FGCU campus, Martin added.

“Our legal recourse is rather limited, but we can and should all speak out to reject and condemn these hateful communications and make those who choose to practice it know they are not welcome at FGCU,” Martin wrote.

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