Police: University of La Verne Student Hoaxed Racist Threats

La Verne Hate Crime Hoaxer
La Verne Police Department

A former student of the University of La Verne was arrested for allegedly sending ten racist threats against herself, as well as the student group with which she had a leadership role. The 25-year-old former student also claimed that she had “found a smoking backpack” in her car before being “assaulted by a masked man” on campus.

The La Verne Police Department has charged former student Anayeli DominguezPena with six counts of filing a false police report, one count of false impersonation over the Internet, one count of making criminal threats, and one count of filing a false claim with the state victim’s compensation fund, according to KTLA 5.

The report added that the charge of making criminal threats, and the charge of filing a false claim with the state victim’s compensation fund are both felonies.

The police said that the threats — which were made through text messaging and emails — were first reported on February 28, and had targeted a student group advocating for social justice.

“A series of nine additional incidents followed the initial threat,” said the police department in a statement. “At one point, the threats escalated to a point where the University of La Verne canceled classes for a day to ‘reset’ and deal with the threats.”

“The threats were directed at the University of La Verne, the student group, herself and members of the group,” the police department added.

Moreover, students on the University of La Verne’s campus had rallied in defense of DominguezPena and others who had appeared to be targeted by the racist threats, reports KTLA 5.

But when the police determined that they found the culprit, the investigation had led back to DominguezPena herself.

At the end of February, the university had closed for a day after the former student claimed that she found “a smoking backpack” in her car before being attacked by “a masked man” on campus, according to San Gabriel Valley Tribune.

The report added that the department’s police chief Nick Paz said DominguezPena had tried to pin the racist threats on a fraternity by incorporating their logo, and sending messages while impersonating the president of the fraternity.

“I think she was trying to instigate some racial issues within the university,” said Paz, according to SGVT. “She was sending messages to certain people and the comments that were being sent were of a racial nature.”

The police department added that no evidence was found linking the fraternity or any of its members to the crimes, reports KTLA 5.

DominguezPena’s bail was set at $200,000. The 25-year-old is scheduled to appear in Los Angeles County Superior Court on Tuesday.

You can follow Alana Mastrangelo on Twitter at @ARmastrangelo, and on Instagram.

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