ITHACA, N.Y. — Four days after police arrested a man involved in a racially charged assault involving Cornell students, police have released the name of a person charged in the incident.
John Greenwood, 19, has been charged with misdemeanor third-degree assault. He’s scheduled to be arraigned Sept. 27 in Ithaca City Court.
According to the Cornell directory, Greenwood is a student at Cornell University.
“The Ithaca Police Department is still actively investigating the incident, including the elements that this assault was based on racial bias,” police said in the news release.
Cornell University official Lindsey Hadlock, speaking on behalf of the university, refused to comment about whether Greenwood is still permitted on campus, despite safety concerns expressed by the Cornell community about the crime. She did not cite a reason for withholding the information. Media Relations director John Carberry also said that the university is not releasing any more information as of Tuesday evening.
Police said they were called to 306 Eddy Street around 1:38 a.m. Friday after a fight was reported in the area.
A black male told officers that he was attacked by four or five white men after initially trying to break up a fight happening on the front lawn of his home. He was taken to the hospital after the incident and police said injuries to people involved were not “significant.” He said he was called racial slurs by the men before being attacked.
The incident has ignited a storm of criticism from the Ithaca and Cornell communities. It’s the second racist incident reported at the campus in the past few weeks.
On Sept. 6, several students at the Latino Living Center reported to Cornell officials that the phrase “Build a wall, build a wall,” was being chanted, likely by people at the Zeta Psi Fraternity house.
One person owned up to chanting the phrase and school officials said that person has since apologized.
Since the incident Friday, the Black Students United at Cornell have said in an online statement, “The continual assault on the mental, physical, and emotional health of Black students, will no longer be tolerated. BSU is fully prepared to work with organizations and task forces to dismantle the deeply rooted structures of white supremacy on this campus. We wish to work toward devising an effective, inclusive, accurate, and educational training program that can be implemented university-wide, for staff, faculty, and students.”
Cornell University President Martha Pollack said in a statement, “I will not tell you ‘this is not who we are,’ as the events of the past few weeks belie that. But it is absolutely not who we want to be.”
Editor’s note: Per policy unanimously approved by The Ithaca Voice board of directors in April 2017, news stories do not contain mugshots of people until post-indictment or post-conviction unless there is an immediate danger to the community that could possibly be remedied by posting a mugshot.