UNC’s ‘Silent Sam’ Confederate statue vandalized

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) — Someone has spray painted “murderer” and “black lives matter” on the statue honoring Confederate veterans nicknamed “Silent Sam” at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill.

Authorities say they are investigating the vandalism, which was discovered Sunday morning. No suspects have been identified or arrests made.

University spokesman Rick White says the school will continue to discuss whether statues and the names of buildings on campus respect people of all races, but damaging statues is not the way to have that discussion.

“Silent Sam” was placed on campus in 1913 to honor 321 UNC students who died fighting for the South in the Civil War. He is called “silent” because he carries a gun but no bullets.

The statue has been the focal point for several campus demonstrations over race relations.

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