MANHATTAN, Kan. – Riley County Police said Monday the man who called them in reference to racist graffiti spray painted on his car admitted that he wrote it himself.
During the course of the investigation into the incident, 21-year-old Dauntarius Williams admitted that he was responsible for the graffiti on his own vehicle.
Police said in a news release that Williams expressed genuine remorse and regret for the way his actions got out of hand.
Williams is quoted in the release as saying, “I would like to deeply apologize to the community. The whole situation got out of hand when it shouldn't have even started. It was just a Halloween prank that got out of hand. I wish I could go back to that night but I can’t. I just want to apologize from the bottom of my heart for the pain and news I have brought to you all.”
According to the release, Riley County Police Department Director Brad Schoen spoke with Riley County Attorney Barry Wilkerson and they together decided that despite having filed a false report, filing charges against Williams wouldn't be in the community’s best interest.
Police acknowledged the fact that the situation dealt with a sensitive topic and impacted the community in a negative way. They said they want Manhattan to continue to be “vigilant, engaged and concerned for the safety and well-being of our fellow citizens.”
“While Williams’ mistake had a decidedly negative impact on the community, please recognize that he, like many of us when we were young, is a young man who made a mistake and is now doing his best to own up to it,” Schoen is quoted saying in the release.
The FBI assisted in the investigation of this case.
The incident triggered huge social reaction from Manhattan, especially among Kansas State University students.
The Black Student Union at KSU held an emergency meeting on how to stop racism on campus following news of the graffiti, and other students said they were very angry, but not surprised.
"I was really angry, so angry my blood boiled," said Allie Asplen after initially hearing the news, who is a junior at K-State. "In all honesty, I wasn't 100 percent shocked."
Had it been a legitimate incident, it could have been deemed a hate crime, and would have been the fourth incident involving alleged racism to happen on the KSU campus since April.