Korans found in Texas university toilet in suspected hate crime

Will Worley
Several editions of the Islamic Holy Book were found in a toilet: Shah Marai/AFP/Getty Images

Police have launched an investigation after several editions of the Koran were found in toilets on a university campus.

The holy books were discovered by a student using the bathroom facilities in the student union at the University of Texas at Dallas.

The school's authorities said the incident was “shocking” and “unusual” and that the university prided itself on its diversity and inclusivity.

The news was broken by the campus newspaper, which is how many students found out about the incident.

"It's definitely saddening and a little disturbing as well," Mohammad Syed, president of the university’s Muslim Association, told NBC 5. "It's something that we do not expect to happen, especially at this campus."

He added: "UT Dallas is a very welcoming environment and I have nothing but good things to say about it."

The student who discovered the books, Jonathan Schuler, said he was “appalled”.

"It made a lot of the hate I had been hearing and seeing on national news real, and very present," Mr Schuler said.

Campus police are reviewing surveillance video from the day but "don't have too many leads”, according to Chief Larry Zacharias, the Texas Tribune reported.

But he said it appeared to be a “one-time, stupid incident”, a feeling reportedly mirrored by many students on campus.

Concerns have been expressed over a rising number of hate crimes in the US since Donald Trump won the election.

Mr Trump's campaign was criticised for being Islamophobic and researchers said his victory had "energised" the far right.

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