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MU police make arrest in terror threat after unsubstantiated rumors grip campus


COLUMBIA, Mo. – There was no rest for a University of Missouri administration who were lauded for keeping the calm last night as rumors swirled about racist activities on campus and on social media.

Certain threats eventually led to the University of Missouri Police Department (MUPD) to arrest a white male who late Tuesday evening inferred he would commit an act of terror at the university on the social media site Yik Yak.

Hunter Park, a 19-year-old student of Missouri S&T in Rolla, was taken into custody at 1:50 a.m. Wednesday morning.

In his messages, Park said, “Some of you are alright. Don’t go to school tomorrow.” and “Well tomorrow mizzou (sic) will really make national news.”

Another Yik Yak said, “I’m going to stand my ground tomorrow and shoot every black person I see.”

The threat came after reports last night of racist activity on campus following the resignation of UM President Tim Wolfe, a victory for black student activist groups on campus. Multiple students made as of now unsubstantiated reports that a group of white people in pickup trucks were terrorizing and intimidating black students and there was scattered talk throughout the night of the Ku Klux Klan marching through the university’s Greek Town, along with a handful of other threats on social media.

The MUPD investigated word of the KKK on campus, but did not find any evidence to suggest the white supremacy group had made an appearance. Nor was there a pickup truck with white males found.

The University took to social media several times to combat substantiated claims from many on campus, including Missouri Student Association President Payton Head that there were confirmed reports of the KKK on campus. Head later retracted his statements after the university rebuffed the claim.

While classes were not cancelled across school, individual professors have cancelled their own classes Wednesday or moved them to locations off campus.

The Missouri Times will be following this story throughout the day and will continue to report on any further developments.

Update (11:45 a.m.): Yik Yak has released a statement condemning the use of their site for intimidating speech.

Members of the Boone and Cole County Sheriff’s Departments, the Columbia Police Department and the Missouri highway Patrol have all convened on campus as a measure of heightened security.