Update: More reaction to racially-charged social media post in Rochester

Reaction is pouring in after a racially-charged photo appeared on social media.

Posted: Nov 2, 2018 10:37 AM
Updated: Nov 2, 2018 1:41 PM

ROCHESTER, Minn. – Reaction is pouring in after a racially-charged photo appeared on social media.

Rochester Public Schools has issued the following statement and confirmed two of the people in the photo attend John Marshall High School.

“Rochester Public Schools is aware of and investigating a racially charged image that is circulating on social media allegedly involving students at one of our schools. We want to ensure you, and our community, that the District will respond in an appropriate manner based on the results of our investigation,” the school said Thursday morning.
“We are unable to provide further comment on this situation due to state and federal data privacy laws that protect student information. However, it is important for our community to know that RPS strives to create a welcoming environment for students of all backgrounds and is committed to providing a learning environment that is free from discrimination. We want you to know that we have additional staff at the school today, to help support our students. The social media post is not a reflection of what our district students and staff believes and feels. We will use this as an opportunity to talk, educate, and grow as a community as we work to become even stronger and more inclusive to all students.”

The Pine Island school district has also issued a statment.

"The Pine Island Schools recently became aware of a racially-charged image that is circulating on social media allegedly involving a student enrolled at our school. The district is investigating the image that was posted on the eve of October 31st. It's the absolute goal of the Pine Island School District to provide a safe and welcoming environment for all our students. We are committed to being inclusive to all students and will use this opportunity to educate, grow and strengthen our district. In no way is this social media post a representation or reflection of the beliefs or values of the district or community."

The Rochester Police Department says a report was filed with them over the incident but it is not being investigated as a crime, as of now.

"At this time with the information that I have, there is no criminal issue regarding the photo,” says Captain Casey Moilanen. “Although the photo is horrible and it’s not something that should be shown in any social media or any place else for that matter, it doesn’t make the photo a crime in and of itself. If it’s being used to intimidate and harass somebody that may be a different story. If we do get reports of a crime that may be involved with this photo, we will investigate it and look into it, but with the information that I have at this point, there’s nothing criminal involved in this particular case that would allow us to investigate it. It’s distasteful and it’s a horrible picture, it doesn’t mean that it’s a crime to have a picture like this.”

A joint statement was issued from the Southeast Social Justice Coalition, the Diversity Council, Rochester for Justice, CIDI, NAACP, UU Racial Justice Task Group, Cure, Southeast Minnesota Area Labor Council, Olmsted County Human Rights Commission and Sierra Club North Star Chapter.

“Both collectively as a broad coalition of organizations and as individual members of this community, we condemn without qualification the behavior of the students who dressed as KKK members and in blackface for Halloween in Rochester last night. We assert that we cannot continue to be "shocked and saddened" by these types of incidents without recourse. There is no room in our community or in our shared future for racism, hatred, discrimination, or belligerent ignorance. We will act. There is space now for each of us to step up and interrupt those things happening around us that perpetuate these divisive attitudes and behaviors. To truly make our community a safe and welcoming place for everyone, we all have a responsibility to recognize and interrupt the words, actions, and attitudes around us that perpetuate white supremacy. We pledge to take ownership of the intolerances that keep us as a community from reaching our fullest, most inclusive potential. We will find allies and supports when we need them. We will lift, together, now,” the statement said.

Rochester Army Recruting Sargent Breckenridge issued this statement.

“Because the questionable conduct of these three individuals is inconsistent with Army values, they will no longer continue the process to become U.S. Soldiers. The Army does not tolerate inappropriate behavior by anyone within our ranks, including recruits who have signed a contract to join in the future. It is important for everyone on our team to live and demonstrate the Army values every day.”

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 448268

Reported Deaths: 6013
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin931011480
Ramsey40016739
Dakota33072340
Anoka30999364
Washington20164228
Stearns17871187
St. Louis13690241
Scott1195496
Wright11614104
Olmsted1048475
Sherburne821365
Carver694836
Clay653280
Rice606868
Kandiyohi554371
Blue Earth541033
Crow Wing482774
Otter Tail457167
Chisago452732
Benton420186
Winona389646
Douglas374166
Nobles370846
Mower365529
Goodhue347958
Polk328658
McLeod325345
Morrison311744
Beltrami310347
Lyon302236
Becker284939
Itasca284543
Isanti282841
Carlton280043
Steele27379
Pine266713
Freeborn245321
Todd231730
Nicollet224636
Brown215134
Mille Lacs214246
Le Sueur210015
Cass207623
Meeker199733
Waseca189316
Wabasha17083
Martin170026
Roseau165416
Hubbard149338
Redwood139727
Renville137539
Houston135913
Dodge13474
Chippewa131332
Cottonwood127218
Fillmore12355
Wadena120116
Rock110212
Sibley10857
Aitkin108433
Watonwan10668
Faribault105916
Pennington99215
Kanabec97818
Pipestone94423
Yellow Medicine93714
Murray8815
Jackson85610
Swift83418
Pope7385
Marshall70215
Stevens7018
Clearwater68514
Lac qui Parle65716
Lake63715
Wilkin6259
Koochiching59610
Lincoln4841
Big Stone4573
Unassigned43768
Grant4298
Norman4248
Mahnomen4107
Kittson37219
Red Lake3174
Traverse2503
Lake of the Woods1951
Cook1140

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 305606

Reported Deaths: 4278
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk45754449
Linn17795275
Scott15444163
Black Hawk13773236
Woodbury13016175
Johnson1211749
Dubuque11387150
Pottawattamie8992112
Dallas888671
Story869434
Webster469771
Cerro Gordo466768
Sioux455157
Clinton450361
Warren443938
Marshall427761
Buena Vista393429
Muscatine390477
Des Moines381841
Plymouth350368
Wapello344198
Jasper321959
Lee317130
Marion304952
Jones271349
Henry264330
Carroll255434
Bremer245048
Crawford231022
Boone218417
Washington217632
Benton209444
Mahaska193136
Jackson192031
Tama187757
Dickinson186026
Delaware173736
Kossuth173644
Clay168820
Wright164824
Fayette162322
Hamilton160029
Buchanan159923
Winneshiek155719
Harrison155162
Hardin154729
Cedar153219
Clayton151448
Butler148224
Page144715
Floyd139636
Cherokee139027
Mills136416
Lyon135332
Poweshiek132724
Hancock130224
Allamakee127928
Iowa125422
Calhoun12279
Grundy121226
Jefferson120724
Madison12039
Winnebago119429
Mitchell116234
Louisa115030
Cass113341
Chickasaw111612
Sac111215
Emmet110831
Appanoose110538
Union108822
Humboldt105519
Guthrie103024
Shelby102926
Franklin102418
Unassigned9310
Palo Alto9079
Montgomery85622
Keokuk85026
Howard84219
Monroe81218
Clarke7957
Pocahontas77611
Ida74630
Greene6927
Davis69121
Adair68820
Lucas6508
Monona64016
Osceola6409
Worth6113
Taylor5949
Fremont5126
Van Buren49712
Decatur4894
Ringgold4389
Audubon4158
Wayne41421
Adams2963
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