The campus police of Colorado State University stopped Thomas Kanewakeron Gray, left, and his brother Lloyd Skanahwati Gray after a parent became “nervous,” the school said.Creditvia Associated Press
A pair of Native American brothers who had traveled seven hours to tour Colorado State University this week had their visit cut short after a parent on their tour reported them to the campus police.
The parent, a mother, became suspicious after they joined the tour in progress, telling a 911 dispatcher that their behavior and clothing stood out, according to audio from the call.
Body camera footage shows two police officers pulling the brothers aside as they descended a set of stairs. There, the officers briefly questioned the brothers, Thomas Kanewakeron Gray, 19, and Lloyd Skanahwati Gray, 17. The officers soon let the pair rejoin the tour, but by then their guide — apparently unaware that the police had been summoned — had moved on, the university said in a statement.
CSU Police Department body cam footage from April 30 Admissions tourVideo by Colorado State University
The teenagers returned to the admissions office and were told that nothing could be done to complete their tour, they said. Frustrated, they embarked on the long trip home to Santa Cruz, N.M.
“We drove seven hours to pretty much get the cops called on us,” Thomas said in an interview on Friday.
In a statement earlier in the week, the university expressed regret over the episode, calling it “sad and frustrating from nearly every angle.” On Friday, it released the 911 audio, body camera footage and a lengthy statement from Dr. Tony Frank, the university’s president.
“Two young men, through no fault of their own, wound up frightened and humiliated because another campus visitor was concerned about their clothes and overall demeanor, which appears to have simply been shyness,” he said. “The very idea that someone — anyone — might ‘look’ like they don’t belong on a C.S.U. admissions tour is anathema.”
In the statement, Dr. Frank wrote of his own privilege as “a white man in a position of authority” and spoke of a “battle with hate within our communities,” referring to several recent episodes at the university, in Fort Collins, Colo.
This year, Colorado State University has reported finding multiple examples of racist graffiti and signs or fliers linked to extremist hate groups around campus. Last summer, a paper noose was found hanging in a residence hall.
In the statement, Dr. Frank said the school was trying to reach the brothers to reimburse them and offer to bring them back as V.I.P. guests. The school also needed to undertake broader changes aimed at inclusivity, he said.
What the Gray brothers experienced is not uncommon for many minorities, who report finding their very presence in some situations wrongly interpreted as a threat. Last month, two black men were arrested while waiting for a meeting in a Philadelphia Starbucks, sparking widespread criticism of the coffee chain and the city police.
During the 911 call on Monday, the woman who called said the brothers were “definitely not” a part of the tour, describing their behavior as “odd” and their clothing as bearing “dark stuff.” She accused them of lying by not giving their names or honestly answering when she asked what they wanted to study.
Later, she appeared to express some doubt, saying that “it’s probably nothing” and that she felt “ridiculous.” But she could not shake her suspicion, she said.
“If it’s nothing, I’m sorry, but it actually made me like feel sick and I’ve never felt like that,” she said.
The shirt Thomas was wearing on the tour had an image for Cattle Decapitation, a death metal band that opposes animal cruelty, he said. Lloyd’s shirt featured the symbol of another death metal band, Archspire.
The brothers, who belong to the Mohawk tribe, moved to New Mexico from New York about a decade ago and were excited to check out the school because of its proximity to Colorado’s capital city, Thomas said.
“My main choice was Denver because of the music culture there,” he said, adding that he hopes to get a doctorate in music to start his own school and become a music therapist. Lloyd, he said, plans to be a visual arts major.
The family has not decided whether to take the university up on its offer of a return trip and he has not decided whether to apply to Colorado State, Thomas said.
“I don’t want to let one person’s selfish or jerky ways get in my way for what I want to do with my life,” he said.
On Friday, the brothers’ mother, Lorraine Kahneratokwas Gray, described her reaction to what had happened when they called her from campus.
“My immediate thought was they’re being profiled because they’re different,” she said on “Native America Calling,” a live call-in show. “They’re not safe there.”
Even before the trip began, Ms. Gray was nervous, as it was the farthest her sons had traveled alone. She said, however, that she was relieved once they sent her a photo of themselves on the tour.
“My thinking was, ‘Boy, now they’re safe,’” she said. “And boy, was I wrong about
Native Eagle Feather Teachings By Adrian LaChance- YouTube
We moved to SD and my daughters went to a Rez school, they were the only white kids.. they were treated well and ran track.. going to track meets was very enlightening.. when the Native Track teams came onto the field, everyone just stopped and glared, prejudice is alive and well in midwestern states.. to a degree you can't imagine
Judge Orders Mueller To Prove Russia Meddled In Election
Judge Dabney L. Friedrich
A Washington federal judge on Thursday ordered special counsel Robert Mueller’s team to clarify election meddling claims lodged against a Russian company operated by Yevgeny Prigozhin, an ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin, according to Bloomberg.
Concord Management and Consulting, LLC. – one of three businesses indicted by Mueller in February along with 13 individuals for election meddling, surprised the special counsel in April when they actually showed up in court to fight the charges. Mueller’s team tried to delay Concord from entering the case, arguing that thee Russian company not been properly served, however Judge Dabney Friedrich denied the request – effectively telling prosecutors ‘well, they’re here.’
Concord was accused in the indictment of supporting the Internet Research Agency (IRA), a Russian ‘troll farm’ accused of trying to influence the 2016 US election.
On Thursday, Judge Freidrich asked Mueller’s prosecutors if she should assume they aren’t accusing Concord of violating US laws applicable to election expenditures and failure to register as a foreign agent.
Concord has asked Dabney to throw out the charges – claiming that Mueller’s office fabricated a crime, and that there is no law against interfering in elections.
According to the judge’s request for clarification, the Justice Department has argued that it doesn’t have to show that Concord had a legal duty to report its expenditures to the Federal Election Commission. Rather, the allegation is that the company knowingly engaged in deceptive acts that precluded the FEC, or the Justice Department, from ascertaining whether they had broken the law. -Bloomberg
On Monday, Friedrich raised questions over whether the special counsel’s office could prove a key element of their case – saying that it was “hard to see” how allegations of Russian influence were intended to interfere with US government operations vs. simply “confusing voters,” reports law.com.
During a 90-minute hearing, Friedrich questioned prosecutor Jonathan Kravis about how the government would be able to show the Russian defendants were aware of the Justice Department and FEC’s functions and then deliberately sought to skirt them.
“You still have to show knowledge of the agencies and what they do. How do you do that?” Friedrich asked.
Kravis, a prosecutor in the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia, argued that the government needed only to show that Concord Management and the other defendants were generally aware that the U.S. government “regulates and monitors” foreign participation in American politics. That awareness, Kravis said, could be inferred from the Russians’ alleged creation of fake social media accounts that appeared to be run by U.S. citizens and “computer infrastructure” intended to mask the Russian origin of the influence operation.
“That is deception that is directed at a higher level,” Kravis said. Kravis appeared in court with Michael Dreeben, a top Justice Department appellate lawyer on detail to the special counsel’s office. -law.com
Concord pleaded not guilty in May. Their attorney, Eric Dubelier – a partner at Reed Smith, has described the election meddling charges as “make believe,” arguing on Monday that Mueller’s indictment against Concord “doesn’t charge a crime.”
“There is no statute of interfering with an election. There just isn’t,” said Dubelier, who added that Mueller’s office alleged a “made-up crime to fit the facts they have.”
Dubelier added that the case against Concord Management is the first in US history “where anyone has ever been charged with defrauding the Justice Department” through their failure to register under FARA.