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Man stabbed on DePaul’s campus during protests Tuesday night

Public+Safety+officers+gather+outside+of+the+main+entrance+of+the+Student+Center+during+a+protest+May+30.++One+person+was+allegedly+stabbed+and+another+allegedly+shocked+with+a+stun+gun.+Danielle+Church+%7C+The+DePaulia
Public Safety officers gather outside of the main entrance of the Student Center during a protest May 30.  One person was allegedly stabbed and another allegedly shocked with a stun gun. Danielle Church | The DePaulia

Public Safety officers gather outside of the main entrance of the Student Center during a protest May 30. One person was allegedly stabbed and another allegedly shocked with a stun gun. Danielle Church | The DePaulia

Public Safety officers gather outside of the main entrance of the Student Center during a protest May 30. One person was allegedly stabbed and another allegedly shocked with a stun gun. Danielle Church | The DePaulia

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DePaul Public Safety confirmed multiple eyewitnesses accounts that a person was stabbed on DePaul University’s campus Tuesday evening. It is unclear whether the altercation was related to the rally held near the Student Center earlier that evening.

In an email sent out to the University community on Wednesday, Public Safety said that the two men involved in the altercation were not students at DePaul and that it was unclear whether they were involved in the rally on campus.

“DePaul’s Office of Public Safety confirmed that a man was stabbed during an altercation with another man around 7:00 p.m. at 2331 N. Sheffield Ave,” the email said. “A bystander subdued the alleged offender and DePaul Public Safety quickly detained him until the Chicago Police Department arrived to take him into custody. The injured man was transported to the hospital. His injuries are believed to be non-life threatening.”

Public Safety also said that patrols will be increased on the Lincoln Park campus for the rest of the spring term.

One of the eyewitness accounts was Nick, a DePaul student who preferred his last name not be used due to safety concerns. He said that he saw two people arguing, one in black and one in orange, outside of his Sheffield Square apartment. The man in black was shouting that the other man had a knife. Nick said he watched the two walk out of sight from his apartment window, and then heard what sounded like a crash and a series of thuds. Public Safety, Nick said, “leisurely strolled over” to the scene. Though it was out of sight he said that “something violent absolutely happened.”

“One guy definitely looked like he’d been stabbed, he had a cloth on the back of his head to stop the bleeding,” Nick said. “I saw three security officers not really intervening. It didn’t look like there was any rigorous response to it.”

The Chicago General Defense Committee’s (CGDC) “Rally Against Hate” started out as an event that was closely watched by Public Safety outside the main entrance of the Student Center. But it eventually turned into a screaming match between the group, the DePaul College Republicans and other bystanders.

“I just think it’s sad and disappointing,” DePaul College Republicans President John Minster said. “I think cancelling the speaker in the first place only emboldens people to continue to do stuff like this.”

At first, CGDC slowly started coming together, silent as Kendrick Lamar’s “Humble” played in the background. Once things started getting out of hand, the Chicago Police Department (CPD) formed two lines barricading CGDC from everyone else.

The College Republicans eventually responded by singing the Star-Spangled Banner as well.

The protests were in response to the cancellation of an appearance by Gavin McInnes, a conservative writer and media figure. On one side were “Antifa” protesters and, according to Nick, perhaps some anarchists. On the other side, were members of a “pro-Western fraternal organization” started by McInnes called the Proud Boys, and some members of the DePaul College Republicans.

CGDC advertised the protest on a flier which stated, “(…) Now more than ever, it is time to push back. Let us celebrate victory by reclaiming the public spaces that they have hijacked with their hateful and dangerous rhetoric. Let’s celebrate by lifting the voices of those that today’s fascists dare to silence!”

By the time Nick reached the street, the fight was over. Nick said he saw the man in orange on the ground, being handcuffed, and the other man was being moved to the back of a police car.

Rosita Palma, also a DePaul student, said she watched what was happening from the stairs leading up to her Sheffield apartment. She largely saw what Nick saw, but also said that the  student in orange was shocked with a stun gun and, once they fell to the ground, the man in black started to punch him.

“In general, it’s disappointing that this kind of stuff happens,” Nick said. “I know that this is politically charged, but it’s really a shame. The fact that it happened outside of my home is pretty rattling.”

Amber Colón contributed to this report.

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Man stabbed on DePaul’s campus during protests Tuesday night