Duke: Student has Admitted to Hanging Noose in Tree

DURHAM, N.C. — An undergraduate student at Duke University has admitted to hanging a noose in a tree and is no longer on campus, university officials said Thursday.

At a news conference Thursday afternoon, school spokesman Michael Schoenfeld said the school would not release the name of the student who admitted to hanging the noose, found early Wednesday in a plaza area on campus. He said the student will be subject to Duke’s student conduct process and that an investigation is continuing to find out if others were involved.

The school also is working with state and federal officials about potential criminal violations.

Schoenfeld said the person was identified after several other students came forward with information.

Officials say the noose was found about 2 a.m. in the plaza outside the Bryan Center, the student commons building.

Black Student Alliance vice president Henry Washington said he and about 14 other students saw the noose hanging overnight after being alerted via Twitter.

At a gathering Wednesday in front of the university’s Gothic chapel building, Duke President Richard Brodhead told a crowd of several thousand that their presence was a rejection of what the noose symbolizes in a region where lynchings were once used to terrorize Black residents. And he said that, while administrators and campus police investigate who displayed the noose and why, it is up to each individual to reject racism.

“One person put up that noose, but this is the multitude of people who got together to say that’s not the Duke we want,” he told the crowd. “That’s not the Duke we’re here for, and that’s not the Duke we’re here to create.”