Jewish structure on Kansas State campus vandalized, rebuilt

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MANHATTAN, Kan. (AP) -

Kansas State University says severe weather, not vandalism, is to blame for damage to a temporary outdoor hut built between two residence halls for the Jewish harvest festival Sukkot.

The university said in a news release Friday that "no malicious intent was discovered." The sukkah was found Oct. 6 wrapped around the car of graduate student Glen Buickerood. Several other vehicles also were damaged. Buickerood, who doesn't identify as Jewish, had collaborated with the Jewish student group Hillel to put up the sukkah to promote diversity.

The release says the investigation began as a "possible criminal damage to property report." But the investigation later determined that the damage was caused by thunderstorms, heavy rain and high winds. The release says a witness reported seeing the sukkah "tumbling in the wind."


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Authorities are investigating the vandalism of a temporary dwelling erected outside a Kansas State University residential complex for the Jewish harvest festival Sukkot.

The Topeka Capital-Journal reports that the sukkah was found late Friday wrapped around the car of graduate student Glen Buickerood, damaging the vehicle. Buickerood, who doesn't identify as Jewish, had collaborated with the Jewish student group Hillel to put up the sukkah to promote diversity.

Buickerood said in an email to university officials that he distributed posters and hung one on the sukkah telling students about the structure before the vandalism.

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Hillel adviser Greg Newmark says what happened was "certainly anti-Semitic in effect." Newmark says the "most generous" thing he can say is that the people involved "are remarkably insensitive."

The sukkah was rebuilt Sunday morning.
 

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