Black Student Claims Three White Men Assaulted Him In Hate Crime
The Iowa City Police Department said that it was investigating the assault of Marcus Owens as a hate crime. Owens, 19, walked in to the department Monday night to report the assault, which he said happened late Saturday in downtown Iowa City.
Owens told police that he was walking in an alley near several bars and restaurants when he was approached by a man and struck multiple times. Two others joined the attack, striking him several more times and calling him racial slurs, he told police. Owens described his assailants as three white men who were of average height and approximately 19 to 22 years old.
Owens, who is from Naperville, Illinois, was later treated for his injuries at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics.
The attack was first reported Tuesday night by WLS-TV in Chicago, which said Owens suffered damage to his eye socket, had his front teeth knocked out and injuries to his lip that required stitches. The station said he was released from the hospital Monday evening.
Students immediately took to social media to express safety concerns and question why they learned about the alleged hate crime from the station, not the university. Using the #explainIowa hashtag on Twitter, they demanded more information about the incident and how it was handled.
The university responded to the hate crime claims with this: