MURFREESBORO, Tenn. - A controversial building on Middle Tennessee State University's campus was vandalized with spray paint.
MTSU police say the Forrest Hall Army ROTC building was vandalized Friday morning. Someone covered up the name of the building with black spray paint, and wrote “MTSU isn’t racist” in red next to the entrance.
The damage is now covered in trash bags and plans are underway to have the paint removed. Police estimate the cost of the damage was $1000. No suspects have been identified, and no one has been arrested.
“Vandalism of public property is unfortunate and expends public resources to repair. Campus police are investigating the matter,” said Jimmy Hart, MTSU’s Director of Media Relations, in a statement.
Forrest Hall has been in the spotlight over the last year as many have fought to have the name changed. It is named after Nathan Bedford Forrest, a confederate general and one time KKK leader.
A MTSU task force made up of school and community leaders began looking into the issue. Public meetings and forums were held to gauge public opinion on the issue. In April of 2016, the task force recommended the name be changed to Army ROTC Building. MTSU President Sidney McPhee endorsed the recommendation and the Board of Regents signed off on it in June.
The Tennessee Historical Commission must still vote on the issue before the name can be changed. It is unknown when that vote will occur.