LOS ANGELES—The UCLA student body is in an uproar following the recent death of junior Samuel Freitas. The student’s body was found last Tuesday by joggers near Wilson Plaza.
Soon after an investigation into his death, campus police released reports stating that the student’s death was “a result of the student’s race.” Though the police have yet to name a suspect, further investigation has been called off.
Student groups around campus have voiced their outrage over the incident and are speaking out. The UCLA Black Panthers released a statement yesterday that said, “We are ashamed to be a part of a school where such an atrocity could occur. It is unacceptable that the police are choosing to end the search for the coward that would murder an innocent student for the color of his skin.”
In response to the growing pressure, Chancellor Gene Block released the following statement yesterday evening: “I would like to first and foremost express my condolences to the friends and family of our very own Samuel Freitas. He was an exceptional student who deserved much more. After reading the entirety of the police report, I must say I am deeply saddened that such a heinous crime could be committed at this prestigious university.” ♦
UPDATE: In an attempt to respond to criticism, the police officer in charge of the investigation released the following report this morning:
First and foremost, I would like to, again, express my deepest sympathies for the friends and family of Mr. Freitas. However, I think people really don’t understand what happened on Tuesday. My phrasing of the report was a bit ambiguous, but the blatant fact is that Sam simply died of a heart attack while in a race, which was literally mentioned in the second line of the report.
I have no fucking idea how this thing blew up, but, Jesus, now people are saying we overlooked a hate crime! Did anyone even know Sam? Because he’s fucking white! The idea that this is a hate crime is fucking ridiculous. I seriously believe no one at this fucking school even glanced past the title of the report.
After reading the police reports as well as the statement above, the Daily Ruin staff would also like to express outrage at the police officers who have chosen to allow such blatant racism to continue.