NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (AP) — A Massachusetts college employee who called campus police to investigate a black student eating her lunch in a common room has been placed on leave.
Smith College, in a statement posted on its website Friday, said the staff member, whose name has not been released, will remain on leave while an external investigation is conducted.
Officials say that person called 911 Tuesday to report someone appeared “out of place” in the building on the Northampton campus.
The school says there was nothing suspicious. College President Kathleen McCartney has apologized to the student, who posted on Facebook that it was outrageous she couldn’t eat her lunch in peace.
She added: “All I did was be black.”
McCartney has said every Smith staff member will undergo mandatory anti-bias training.
Read the transcript below, via Smith College:
July 31, 2018, 1:53 p.m.
Dispatch: Campus Police, recorded line.
Reporting Caller: I was just walking through here in the front foyer of [REDACTED] and we have a person sitting there laying down in the living room area over here. I didn’t approach her or anything but um he seems to be out of place … umm … I don’t see anybody in the building at this point and uh I don’t know what he’s doing in there just laying on the couch.
Dispatch: Can I have your last name please?
Reporting Caller: [REDACTED]
Dispatch: I’ll send someone over and check it out.
Reporting Caller: Alright. I’ll wait over here.
Responding Officer: All clear. That was a student relaxing in the living room. They had lunch here. I guess and they decided to stay for a while.