The Michigan Daily - Monday, September 26, 2005 - 7A
Continued from page 1A
other students might commit against them.
The Michigan Daily was unable to contact
the alleged victims, whose names have not been
released by AAPD. University administrators
and other campus leaders were unwilling to
share the information.
Stephanie Kao, a Business senior and presi-
dent of the United Asian American Organiza-
tions, said that whether the incident is true or not
is beside the point - it highlights the negative
campus climate toward Asians students.
"A lot of us are angry about these racial slurs
- we're so focused on this issue of urination
and beer. It's beyond this issue at this point. This
incident might have been the catalyst, but we are
trying to address why these incidents are pos-
sible and what in this University climate makes
it possible and acceptable for racial harassment
to happen," Kao said.
She added that since the alleged crime was
publicized, UAAO has received numerous mes-
sages from Asian students who said they were
victims of racial harassment on campus before.
Suspects recount incident
However, the accused said this incident was
completely and illogically misinterpreted as a
racially motivated act. The student accused of
urinating on the two Asian students stressed
that it is nearly impossible to urinate off their
balcony, The fence around it is about five feet
high, made of wood with only half an inch slit
between the boards, where the suspect allegedly
urinated through onto the couple. In order for
someone to urinate off the balcony someone
would have to be standing on a chair, the sus-
pect said. He added that there is also a set of bike
racks immediately under their apartment so it is
difficult to walk directly under the balcony.
The student suspected of urinating on the cou-
ple said the night started off in typical fashion
with only him and his roommate hanging out on
the balcony playing beer pong. While an Asian
couple walked by, his roommate tossed a beer
absentmindedly over the side of the balcony.
The roommate insisted that it was a coinci-
dence that he threw the beer while the couple
was walking by, but he said it was at least seven
or eight feet away from them.
"I'm almost positive nothing hit them," he
Both of the accused said that in response the
Asian male used profanities and flicked a Dun-
hill cigarette at them, which hit one the suspects,
a 21-year-old male, in the arm.
Amused by the gesture, the 21-year old male
said he picked up the cigarette and started smok-
ing it. Both admitted to exchanging profanities,
but none involving racial epithets.
After a few minutes of arguing, the accused
said the couple walked around the corner lead-
ing them to believe the incident was over.
However, the incident escalated when they
said the Asian male showed up approximately
45 minutes later with four other male friends.
The Asian female was not present.
The accused said that the five men were yell-
ing at them to come downstairs and fight.
"If you show up with five people against two,
how can you turn around and say your were
ethnically intiifnidating them. It was five to 2two
- he brought a gang to our apartment," the 21-
year-old male said.
The 20-year-old male said he went downstairs
to try to resolve the issue, because the Asian stu-
dent believed he threw the beer intentionally at
the michigan daiy,
them. However, the suspect said there was only
more yelling, and he decided to go back inside.
"I didn't think we could resolve anything with
five pissed off people, and I wasn't going to wait
outside all night," the 20-year-old male said.
LSA junior Amanda Beliveau, who lives right
next door to the accused, said she also went
down stairs to defuse the situation.
She said she started talking to the alleged vic-
tim who told her, "They almost spilled beer on my
girlfriend" and "They could have peed on us."
Beliveau said she did not believe her neigh-
bor urinated on the alleged victims because she
thought he would have brought it up then if it did
She added the male also wanted the number
for Prime Student Housing, the owner of the
building, to get them evicted.
After five minutes of trying unsuccessfully to
placate the five men, Beliveau gave up and went
back upstairs to her apartment.
Another neighbor, LSA senior George Saba
and a Daily business staff member, said he
stepped out of his apartment when he heard yell-
ing at about 11:25 p.m. He said he saw five males
below trying to incite a fight with his neighbors.
The 20-year-old suspect said that even though
there were five men, he was not afraid to leave
his apartment because it was a Thursday night
and the streets were illuminated. He left and
went to use the ATM and get a pack of cigarettes
around 11:45 p.m.
When he returned the men were still waiting
for him. Another exchange of profanities ensued
- yet the accused said they never used a racial
slur. When one of the five men below was yell-
ing at them in Korean, the 20-year-old male said,
"You are going to have to speak English. I don't
understand you." To this one of men replied,
"Why don't you learn to speak Korean, bitch."
The 21-year-old male said at one point during
the exchange, he was referred to as "white fat
AAPD arrives on the scene
Minutes later, the 20-year-old said the AAPD
arrived, and he ran upstairs. Neither of the
accused knew who called the.AAPD, but the 21-
year-old male thought it was the Asian female
Having had three or four beers, the 20-year-
old male did not want to risk an MIP, so he bar-
ricaded himself in his apartment. In other news
sources, the suspect was identified as a 21-year-
old, which didn't address this possibility of why
he was hiding from the police.
"I didn't want to get an MIP and I just thought
I could deal with it tomorrow," he said.
Since his roommate was of legal drinking
age, he volunteered to talk to the police.
The 21-year-old male said he talked with the
police and tried to explain his account of the
evening. He said the police in turn offered him
an ultimatum: either his roommate comes out or
he was to be arrested.
His neighbor Saba said he heard one the offi-
cers say to him at one point "I don't believe you."
After communicating with the police, the 21-
year old male entered the apartment and told his
roommate he was facing charges of ethnic intimi-
dation for allegedly urinating on the couple.
When he would not come out, The AAPD
officers took the 21-year-old male to the station
to be questioned, fingerprinted and have his pic-
ture taken. He said he was there for half an hour
and he was not charged with anything.
The 21-year-old said that the next day he saw
the Asian man and an unrecognizable passenger
drive by in a blue subaru and stare at his apart-
ment on two separate occasions. He said they
drove away before he could take a picture.
The AAPD has not confirmed if the two
accused are being charged as of yet. Sergeant
Pat Hughes said all he can confirm is that the
issue is still under investigation.
The 20-year-old male said that the AAPD has
not returned calls from his lawyer.
The AAPD police report included a state-
ment from the accused, the two victims and an
eyewitness who worked at the parking structure
adjacent to the apartment building.
In the report, the parking attendant said she
witnessed the event from the second floor of
the parking structure. She said she saw one
of the suspects leaning up against the balcony,
but due to the distance was not sure if he was
in fact urinating. Also, the attendant said she
saw the accused throwing soapy water from
The 20-year-old male said he was throwing
the water off his balcony to clean out the case
of a keg. In no way was he aiming it at the men
below he said.
Despite the outrage from the community, he
said he still defends his innocence. "I'm curious
as to why these five men who came to my resi-
dence and who have threatened my roommate
and me have not been investigated. It appears
that the administrators and student organiza-
tions have taken their words as the truth without
hearing our sides of the story. We are innocent
of these accusations," he said.
Groups rally to action
Regardless of the outcome of the alleged fel-
ony, many student organizations across campus
are planning events to end racial prejudice on
the campus. Today, a meeting will be held at the
William Monroe Trotter Multicultural Center at
5 p.m to discuss what actions the Asian com-
munity can take to resolve racial harassment on
The Michigan Student Assembly has also
prepared a resolution that would allocate MSA
funds and plan events to educate students
on hate crimes.
Andrew Guzman, an LSA junior and the
president of Filipino American Student
Association, said that the Asian American
community has become too complacent
with racial discrimination in the past and
it is time for the community to step up and
speak for itself.
"Something as big as (the urination
incident) that happened struck me. It moti-
vates us. We need to watch out for each
other on campus," Guzman said.
American Culture Prof. Amy Stillman
was one of several faculty members of the
Asian Pacific-Islander American Studies
program that sent a letter to University
administrators on Thursday urging them
to take measures to stop racial harassment
on campus. Stillman said clearly the Uni-
versity needs to expend more effort edu-
cating students on the harm racial bias
"Although there have been efforts in past
years to educate administrators on (Asian Amer-
ican) community needs, it is widely perceived
that these efforts have been met repeatedly by
administrative indifference," Stillman said.
She added, "The University of Michigan,
which prides itself on valuing diversity, has
failed its (Asian) students. Enough is enough."
- Daily Staff Reporter C.C. Song
contributed to this report.
Continued from page 1A
Already, significant numbers of Michigan high
school students take the ACT: According to Kaplan
Test Prep and Admissions, 68 percent of Michigan
seniors took the ACT in 2004. Ann Arbor numbers
were similar - roughly 63 percent at Huron, Com-
munity and Pioneer high schools.
Michigan is not the first state to use college
entrance exams to encourage high school students
to continue their education.
Both Colorado and Illinois implemented similar
policies several years ago, using the ACT as part of
their state assessment. As a result, the number of
in-state, ACT-tested freshman enrolled in Colorado
and Illinois colleges rose more than 20 percent in
2003, with minorities in the same category expe-
riencing similar increases, according a case study
done by ACT.
"Some of these high school kids may not have
figured they would qualify to go to college until
they see their scores on the test," said Martin Ack-
ley, spokesman for the Michigan Department of
Education. Indeed, 12 percent of the ACT-tested
students enrolled in Colorado colleges said they did
not intend to go to college at the time they took the
While the ACT is the more popular college
entrance exam among Michigan high schoolers
- only 10 percent of Michigan seniors took the
SAT last year - the state decided to use the ACT,
instead of another college entrance exam, as the
new required test since it was more cost-effective.
The competitive bid for the $22.5 million con-
tract to develop additional parts of the Michigan
Merit Exam was won by Pearson Educational Mea-
surement, the parent company of the ACT.
Once it is written, the test will include the ACT;
WorkKeys, a work skills assessment and additional
language arts, mathematics, science and social
Although the dust has settled and the ACT
selected, government officials still have much work
to do. The new test must be approved by the U.S.
Department of Education in compliance with the
No Child Left Behind Act, said Ackley.
"We are going to be piloting the test over the next
couple years. We'll be piloting questions and pilot-
ing the exam to get an idea of whether it needs to
improved or not," he added.
Last week's announcement'said the new test will
reach student's desks by spring 2008, yet the actual
timeline for implementation is still up in the air.
"As far as when the U.S. Department of Ed gives
its approval or denial - it's up to them. We hope
the sooner the better," Ackley said.
The New Test
Name: Michigan Merit Exam
components: ACT, WorkKeys
(work skills test), additional
language arts, mathematics,
scienCe and social studies
Cost: $70 paid by state funds
Inauguration: Spring 2008
Continued from page 1A
encountered," Rhetoric Prof. James Porter of
Michigan State University said.
The University Library System defines plagia-
rism as using "another person's ideas and expres-
sions in your writing without acknowledging the
source is to plagiarize."
The definition is changing all the time, said Car-
oline Eisner, co-organizer and Sweetland associate
director. Eisner attributed the definition's fluidity to
the rise of the Internet and today's copy-paste men-
tality. She added that part of the reason the writing
center decided to organize the conference a year
and a half ago was because of the rise in plagiarism
due to the Internet. One such plagiarism issue that
resulted from the growth in technology is whether
it is acceptable to use someone else's website design
or PowerPoint template without attribution.
"If you want to take a strict literal definition
of plagiarism, everyone with a PowerPoint pre-
sentation at this conference has been doing it,"
Students in one session answered that question
by saying that whether it qualifies as plagiarism
depends which class the website or PowerPoint has
been created for - if the website is for a history
course, it is acceptable to plagiarize because stu-
dents are only graded on content, but a web-design
course is a different situation.
Speakers also debated how plagiarizers and
reporters who violate journalistic ethics should be
punished. Dan Okrent, Former New York Times
public editor and Michigan Daily alum, illustrat-
ed the discrepancy by telling the story of Mitch
Albom, a Detroit Free Press sports columnist,
who Okrent said fabricated part of a column last
year. Unlike most journalists who commit similar
crimes, Albom was not fired. Okrent suspected
this was a result of Albom's status as a best-selling
author and the paper's most recognizable figure.
At the University, offenders of plagiarism are
treated on a case-by-case basis., Possible punish-
ments include an "F" on the plagiarized paper,
failure in the class or expulsion. Separate academic
units deal with plagiarism offenders in different
ways. In LSA, for example, students charged with
academic misconduct have all relevant material
stored in a dean's file. At the Rackham School of
Graduate Studies, it can lead to a formal hearing or
even the rescinding of a degree.
Most attendees and speakers agreed that aware-
ness of plagiarism has progressed in recent years.
Okrent, whose hiring at the Times was chiefly in
response to reporter Jayson Blair's plagiarism scan-
dals, said that in the past, plagiarism happened
often, but it was not publicized.
The Blair scandal put the crime on the
forefront. Most speakers agreed on the seri-
ousness of the crime.
"Plagiarism brought down the most important
newspaper in the English-speaking world," Okrent
said, referring to the Blair scandal that occurred at
Macarena Hernandez, a columnist for the Dallas
Morning News, was directly affected by the Blair
scandal. Her columns, written while she worked for
the San Antonio Express News, were among the
articles Blair copied.
She was the first to point out Blair's crimes to his
editors, the beginning of a long chain of events that
led to his downfall.
"I couldn't imagine that someone would just
take my stuff," Hernindez said.
Someone in the audience of her session yester-
day morning asked whether she thought Blair was
"He blamed it on drugs and on being bipolar,"
Hernandez said. "I think he was just lazy."
- Lee Wachocki contributed to this report
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