Barnard faculty, staff receive racist robocalls after Tessa Majors slaying

The contents of the robocall messages related to Tessa Majors’ death "are abhorrent and viciously racist," a statement from university officials said.
Tessa Majors.
Tessa Majors.Courtesy Majors family

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By Elisha Fieldstadt

Many Barnard College faculty and staff members have received racist robocalls from a white supremacist group in the wake of first-year student Tessa Majors' slaying, according to the schools.

"We have become aware that robocall messages from a white supremacist group were received on many faculty and staff landlines at Barnard and may have been received by a small number of Columbia faculty and staff as well," a statement from university officials said. Majors attended Barnard, a women's college affiliated with Columbia University.

"The contents of this message, related to Tess Majors’ recent death, are abhorrent and viciously racist," the statement said.

Majors, 18, was stabbed to death in Morningside Park on Dec. 11 in what police said was a robbery gone wrong. The park is steps from both Barnard's and Columbia's campuses.

A 13-year-old boy was arrested after Majors was killed and is being held on charges that include second-degree murder.

Two 14-year-old boys have been questioned and released by police, according to the New York City Police Department. One of the teens is said to be black.

NBC News is not identifying the teens because they are juveniles.

The university statement on the racist robocall messages said school officials are working with the NYPD to block the caller. Faculty and staff who receive the calls are encouraged to report them.

"We take this attack on our values extremely seriously," the statement said.