Utah college condemns professor’s tweets during protests

FILE - in this Saturday, May 30, 2020 file photo, protesters climb on a flipped over police vehicle, in Salt Lake City. Protests in Salt Lake City that drew several thousand people are a setback for contact tracers already struggling to contain the spread of the coronavirus, said Tair Kiphibane, infectious disease bureau manager for the Salt Lake County Health Department. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Weber State University in Utah is condemning a series of tweets by a criminal justice professor during protests last weekend decrying the death of George Floyd.

The university said in a statement posted Monday that tweets by professor Scott Senjo were “abhorrent” and that an investigation is underway to determine if other measures would be taken to ensure campus safety.

Senjo’s Twitter account shows he tweeted support for damage done to CNN headquarters in Atlanta and tweeted at a reporter who said he had been hit by police in New York City: “Excellent. If I was the cop, you wouldn’t be able to tweet.”

In response to one tweet showing a New York City police car driving into people, Senjo commented: “That’s not how I would have driven the car into the crowd,” his Twitter account shows.

“Weber State University does not condone violence or threats of violence under any circumstance,” the statement said. “The comments made by our faculty member are hurtful and inconsistent with the values of Weber State University and our work to create an inclusive and welcoming environment.”

An email sent to Senjo’s university account was not immediately returned Monday. His voicemail on his listed work phone number was full.

Senjo has been a professor at the college in Ogden, Utah, since 2000, said Weber State University spokeswoman Allison Hess.

Floyd, a black man, died Monday after a white Minneapolis police officer pressed his knee on Floyd’s neck until he stopped breathing. His death has prompted protests across the U.S. and Europe.

In other developments:

— Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall has declared a curfew for the entire week, through June 8. The curfew will begin each evening at 8 p.m. and end at 6 a.m. each morning. It requires people to stay off of streets, sidewalks and other public spaces, with exceptions for work, religious services, getting food or those who are homeless.

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