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Bridgewater State University investigating racist messages allegedly sent by student

The campus of Bridgewater State University, as seen in 2014.John Tlumacki/Globe Staff/File 2014/GLOBE STAFF FILE

Bridgewater State University is investigating after a student allegedly sent racist messages through a private site, according to a university officials.

The university launched a student conduct and BSU Police Department investigation on Dec. 24 after receiving an e-mail about the incident, according to university spokesperson Paul Jean.

In the messages, sent after Dec. 21 over what appears to be a dating app, the student used racial slurs and told the recipient to “Go back to Africa,” according to a screenshot of the conversation forwarded to the Globe from the university. The student also called the target of the message a “monkey” and “ape,” saying, “I don’t like your kind. I’m sorry we stole u ppl in the first place. I wish we never did...[You] make this earth & MY Country way much worse than it already is.”

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University officials said they are in communication with both the student who sent the messages, and the recipient, who does not attend BSU.

“There is no tolerance at Bridgewater State University for acts of hatred,” Dean of Students Denine Rocco said in a statement. “The comments are abhorrent and violate the official values statement of Bridgewater State University, as adopted by our Board of Trustees and undersigned by hundreds of employees and students.”

A woman who says she is the victim’s sister posted a tweet on Christmas Eve showing a screenshot of the conversation. In the tweet, which has since gained more than 700 likes and 550 retweets, the woman wrote that racism “is alive and well,” and that her sister had been sent “a sick message on Tinder.”

The Globe could not immediately identify the name of the student being investigated.


Abigail Feldman can be reached at abigail.feldman@globe.com.