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UW-Whitewater students concerned after mysterious graffiti pops up

Posted at 7:07 PM, Mar 01, 2018
and last updated 2018-03-02 08:43:18-05

Bizarre graffiti popping up at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater has some students afraid to go to class.  

"We're worried about going to school like just going to school and now we have this potential threat.  So that just kind of puts people a little bit more on edge," said Laura Eichsteadt, Senior.

Someone has been spray painting images inside buildings on campus for about a month.  

"It was like the word soon but the 'O' was like eyeballs that had 'X's' through them and it was wearing a crown and it had a weird eerie smile," said Eichsteadt.

More images seem to be appearing. University Police aren't sure if that's because more people are reporting it or if the vandal is being more prolific.  The chief said the graffiti doesn't pose a threat.

"We have nothing, nothing that shows us that this is indicative of something that's about to occur," said Chief Matthew Kiederlen, UW-Whitewater.

Police said this could be gang-related, but they don't know either way.  The department is still looking for the person responsible. 

"They're intelligent enough that they're doing it outside of camera angles.  They're doing it in the areas where people aren't normally going to spot or see them," said Kiederlen.

Police received a report of this type of graffiti at a restaurant off campus, but haven't been able to confirm this.

"We have an individual that now is getting a lot of attention, both through the rumor mill and through social media, so I think he—he or she, I'm not going to assume—has no reason to stop," said Kiederlen.

Even with assurance from police, some students don't feel safe.

"I thought it was silly at first, but I'm starting to get more concerned after seeing it in more places," said Kaylee Goers, a Freshman.

"More police presence on campus, I would like it to be addressed by our dean or our chancellor," said Eichsteadt.

Others think it's probably a prank. 

"I think it's just people looking for attention," said Kyle Lastovich, a Freshman.

"I really don't think it's that big of a deal," said Brandon Forbes, a Freshman.

There will be more police on campus Sunday for an event.  The chief said it's not because his department is worried, but it's to alleviate concerns for the community.  

If you know anything about the graffiti or the person behind it, you're asked to contact campus police (262) 472-4660.