UNC Asheville lifts shelter in place order following threat


ASHEVILLE, N.C. (WSPA) – The University of North Carolina Asheville officials have lifted a “shelter in place” order that was issued Friday morning after receiving a threat related to a Black Lives Matter mural on campus.

7:10 p.m. UPDATE

Chancellor Nancy J. Cable issued the following statement:

Dear UNC Asheville Campus Community,

I write to give you a campus community evening update. As of 7:00 p.m. tonight, UNC Asheville in consultation with federal, state, and local law enforcement, lifted the “shelter in place” order. The investigation related to the Black Lives Matter mural located on our campus remains ongoing. 

Below is a link to the video statement I recorded this evening. Today has been a challenging time for UNC Asheville and I am grateful for your support and cooperation. 

I encourage every member of our campus community to remain vigilant. Please take care of one another.

We remain fully committed to our University values of diversity, equity and inclusion. Black Lives Matter. This is about our University values that respect our students’ first amendment rights to express their views about the pain and sadness at the senseless loss of so many lives. 

Updates will be provided as information is made available. Please refer to bulldogalert.unca.edu.

The university issued the order at 7:30 a.m. due to “a threat to the safety of members UNC Asheville community.”

“All residential students should shelter in place, all non-essential personnel should return home,” the university said. There will be no in-person or virtual classes, practices and activities on campus Friday.

On 8:37 a.m., the Office of the Chancellor released the following message:

Dear UNC Asheville Faculty and Staff colleagues,

During the night several offices at the University received an email communicating a direct threat to members of the UNC Asheville community. The email demanded that the Black Lives Matter mural on University Heights on campus be painted over. 

A decision has been made to send a Bulldog Alert to all faculty, staff, and students to shelter in place until further notice. We ask that employees, other than essential personnel, stay away from campus today.  We will keep the community apprised as information becomes available and we will reopen campus as soon as possible.  But no earlier than tomorrow morning.

Chief Eric Boyce and the EoC are working with senior staff and state and local authorities and we will keep you updated. Please discontinue any and all in-person and virtual classes, practices and activities throughout today. 

We are working with the authorities to keep our campus safe and to return to the work of the University as soon as possible.  If you have questions, please be in touch with your senior staff member.

Your cooperation is essential and we are grateful.

UNC Asheville officials provided 7 News with a picture of the mural the email demanded the university paint over.

Source: UNC Asheville

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