Two white University of Connecticut students were arrested Monday after they were reportedly shown on video repeatedly using the N-word outside of student apartments.
Jarred Mitchell Karal and Ryan Gilman Mucaj, who are both 21, were charged with ridicule on account of creed, religion, color, denomination, nationality or race, according to documents university police emailed Atlanta Black Star Tuesday.
The incident they are accused in happened on Oct. 11 in the parking lot of Charter Oak Apartments, police reported in a criminal summary for the men.
A resident at the apartment complex said in an affidavit that the men first got his attention when they said the word “penis” loudly in snippets of their conversation.
The witness said he grabbed his cellphone to record and expected to get funny video of students playing around, but instead he captured the men shouting n—er.
The video of the incident went viral. It reportedly showed the accused men walking in the parking lot saying the N-word to Black students in their rooms and laughing about it.
Police said there was also a third unnamed person with Mucaj and Karal during the incident.
He wasn’t charged because he “did not participate” in saying the racial epithet, according to police.
Before the incident, he was with Mucaj and Karal playing video games and yelling vulgarities at a nearby business, police said.
The group later left and walked through the complex parking lot, according to the criminal summary.
The university chapter of the NAACP called use of the racial slur “demeaning, hurtful and hateful” and demanded the university hold students accountable in a letter to the editor with The Daily Campus.
The chapter wrote in a list of demands that the university should make sure the Delta Epsilon Psi Fraternity, which the students are believed to be members of, issues a public apology and is thoroughly investigated.
The NAACP chapter also demanded that the school work with the NAACP to ban hate speech from its student code of conduct and that a “large cluster” of Black administrators, faculty and staff members are hired.
“We demand for your full assurance that you will take appropriate measures to hold the students involved in these heinous acts of racism accountable,” the NAACP said in the letter.
University President Thomas Katsouleas released a statement to students Monday calling the encounter “an egregious assault on our community that has caused considerable harm.”
“I’m grateful for the university’s collective effort in responding to this incident, especially the hard work of the UConn Police Department, which has been investigating the case since it was reported,” he said.
It’s unclear if the students will be expelled from the university, but they would have an opportunity to appeal any alleged violations of the university’s Student Code of Conduct, University spokeswoman Stephanie Reitz said in an email Atlanta Black Star obtained Tuesday.
“If the finding is upheld, the student could be subject to discipline ranging from probation to suspension or dismissal,” Reitz said.
Mucaj and Karal are scheduled to appear in Rockville Superior Court on Oct. 30, the university reported.