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EVANSTON, Ill. — Students, parents and members of the community staged a protest Monday after three nooses were found hanging from a tree near a middle school in Evanston.

The organization Ex Cons for Community and Social Change led the protest, billed as a stand against racism and hatred, outside Haven Middle School, located at 2417 Prairie Avenue.

Those protesting are demanding to know why there has not been an arrest in this case 10 days after the discovery was made.

Some parents found the nooses hanging from a tree between Haven and Kingsley Elementary School on May 13. That day, Haven students had staged a sit-in against school staffing changes proposed for next year. 

In a letter to parents, District 65 Supt. Dr. Devon Horton called the discovery of the nooses a hate crime and an outwardly racist act. He also said some students were seen allegedly chanting and carrying ropes to the spot where the nooses were found.

Protesters said they want transparency when it comes to the investigation and they also want to meet with Evanston’s mayor, Daniel Biss.

The Evanston/Skokie School District 65 released the following statement over the incident:

On May 13, a hateful and outwardly racist act was committed on district property between Haven Middle School and Kingsley Elementary. The actions that occurred that day are unacceptable on every level. This attack resounds with a tone of hate and hurt that has affected members of our entire community.

The District is fully cooperating with the Evanston Police Department on its investigation which is currently underway. Given the active investigation, no additional information can be shared at this time.

Our school and district teams continue to work in support of our students to provide opportunities for processing and healing. We stand with our community and our school district will continue its efforts, intentionally and systemically, to fight racism and inequities in all forms. We remain fully committed to our equity and anti-racism efforts and look forward to the swift outcomes of the investigation currently underway.