North Carolina university issues shelter-in-place to 3,600 students and staff after officials receive a ‘direct threat’ demanding a Black Lives Matter mural on campus be painted over

  • Students and staff at University of North Carolina Asheville were ordered to shelter-in-place on Friday  
  • Several offices at UNC Asheville received ‘a direct threat’ via email with demands to remove a Black Lives Matter mural on campus
  • The mural was installed on September 30 by black student artists and took around eight hours to complete
  • A UNC Asheville spokesperson declined to reveal the nature of the direct threat

Students and staff at a North Carolina university were ordered to ‘shelter in place’ over threatening demands to remove a Black Lives Matter mural on campus.

Administrators with University of North Carolina Asheville first alerted its 3,600 students and additional faculty that something was amiss on Friday morning.

In a ‘Bulldog Alert,’ officials said that several offices at the institution received an email with ‘a direct threat to members of the UNC Asheville community.’

University of North Carolina Asheville officials said several offices received emails with ‘direct threats’ and took issue with a Black Lives Matter mural on campus (pictured)

‘The email demanded that the Black Lives Matter mural on University Heights on campus be painted over.’

‘A decision has been made to send a Bulldog Alert to all faculty, staff, and students to shelter in place until further notice.’ 

The campus could reopen as soon as Saturday morning, but will remained closed on Friday. 

DailyMail.com reached out to UNC Asheville spokesperson Steve Plever, who declined to reveal the nature of the threat. 

But Plever added that if the matter is resolved by Friday afternoon, school officials may hold a press conference discussing the incident with media.   

UNC Asheville administrators all students staying on-campus to shelter-in-place, while those living in off-campus house were told to avoid the area

UNC Asheville administrators all students staying on-campus to shelter-in-place, while those living in off-campus house were told to avoid the area

An update just before 11am alerted students and staff that the campus remiained closed, but Health and Counseling Services would continue to provide support

An update just before 11am alerted students and staff that the campus remiained closed, but Health and Counseling Services would continue to provide support

In addition to in-person classes, virtual lessons and extracurricular activities were also cancelled. 

The Black Lives Matter mural being targeted was installed on September 30 on University Heights near campus.

According to the website, the colorful mural was created by black student artists and took around eight hours to complete. 

The mural was painted in permanent road paint, meaning it will ‘remain on University Heights indefinitely.’

As of 11am, the campus remained under lockdown but administrators approved ‘one on one or small group virtual connections’ if people wanted to provide support for each other.  

Pictured: An aerial view of 'Black Lives Matter' mural painting is seen on Fulton Street in Brooklyn, New York City on June 15

Pictured: An aerial view of ‘Black Lives Matter’ mural painting is seen on Fulton Street in Brooklyn, New York City on June 15

A number of Black Lives Matter murals have adorned city streets from New York City to Los Angeles since George Floyd’s death in May. 

His death reignited calls to end police brutality, racial inequality and hold law enforcement to higher procedural standards while on duty.

However, some Americans have gone out of their way to damage or vandalize the murals.

In one instance, a couple was charged with a hate crime after they painted over a Black Lives Matter mural in Martinez, California. 

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