Monday, Nov. 5, Updated 5:58 p.m.
The University found the student who reported several swastikas on her Mitchell Hall door was the one who drew them.
Using footage from a hidden video camera, the University Police Department linked freshman Sarah Marshak with the vandalism. She will now appear before Student Judicial Services and could face federal and District charges, a spokesperson announced Monday afternoon.
In an interview with The Hatchet Monday evening, Marshak, said she only drew the final three of six swastikas on her door in an attempt to highlight what she characterized as GW’s inaction. Only hours earlier, Marshak categorically denied the charges.
“I wasn’t looking to create this, sort of, insanity,” Marshak, who was previously a Hatchet reporter, said in a phone interview. “I wasn’t looking to become a media darling. I was just looking for acknowledgment from University that someone drew a swastika on the door.”
Marshak said Tara W. Pereira, director of SJS, informed her she would likely be expelled. Marshak said she did not want to leave GW but probably will.
Tracy Schario, a University spokesperson, said GW stands by its statement that they have a signed confession from Marshak. Schario would not comment on how many swastikas Marshak was responsible for, only saying it was “several of the incidents.”
Robert Fishman, the director of Hillel, said during conversations, Marshak always came across as rational.
“This is a definite cry for help on her part,” Fishman said in a phone interview Monday. “I can’t imagine why anyone would do anything like this. I feel very sad for her. At the same time I am upset that she had to resort to the actions she took.”
Another student was caught Saturday night in relation to the drawing of swastikas, the word “niggers” and the text “white power” in New Hall.
The University is still investigating the Potomac House incident.
Schario would not comment whether the camera was placed in Mitchell Hall by UPD or the Federal Bureau of Investigation, who also was investigating the matter.
- Related articles:
- Freshman who reported swastikas drew them as well (Hatchet Web Update, Nov. 5, updated 5:58 p.m.)
- One suspect caught in spate of campus vandalism (The Hatchet, Nov. 5)
- Knapp: Incidents damage GW’s image (The Hatchet, Nov. 5)
- New swastika found in New Hall (Hatchet Web Update, Nov. 2, 9:42 p.m.)
- Racial slur found on New Hall door (Hatchet Web Update, Nov. 2, 9:51 p.m.)
- FBI called in to assist with swastika investigation (Hatchet Web Update, Nov. 2, 5:10 a.m.)
- News Analysis: What is a hate crime? (The Hatchet, Nov. 1)
- An eighth swastika is found overnight in Mitchell Hall (The Hatchet, Nov. 1)
- University: Seventh swastika not yet hate crime (Hatchet Web Update, Oct. 29, 7:53 p.m.)
- More swastikas found on door (The Hatchet, Oct. 29)
- Swastika drawn on door (The Hatchet, Oct. 25)