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Protest in Quincy on Thursday over alleged hate crime

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A protest is planned for Thursday, April 8, after a 19-year-old Black college student was reportedly beaten by a white man over the weekend.

Jazzpher Evans, a freshman at Quincy University, was attacked at a bar off the university’s campus. According to Evans’ aunt, Sharron Evans, and local media, the student was slammed against a wall at The Barn and put into a choke hold. After the teen went unconscious, the bar owner allegedly drag her out and left her on the pavement. Evans’ said her niece’s friend, who is white, was left alone as Jazzpher was attacked.

Sharron Evans said that police did not offer any medical assistance when they arrived despite visible wounds on Jazzpher Evans’ face. She also said that the Quincy Police Department is “dragging their feet” on the investigation. Quincy Police Chief Rob Copley told the Herald-Whig that the department is working with the state’s attorney office and that it was a “complex investigation.”

“While we understand the demand for ‘quick justice,’ it is important that the investigation is thorough and proper,” he told the Quincy-based newspaper.

In a press release, Jazzpher’s attorney Keenan J. Saulter said that she sustained a traumatic brain injury, was rendered unconscious for at least five minutes, suffered multiple lacerations and cuts to her face, nose, hip, back and neck. She is receiving medical attention for her injuries.

Quincy University President Brian McGee said the school is supporting their student. “We will do everything we can to make certain this assault is fully investigated,” he said. “We are committed to keeping our students safe, supporting our students, and protecting this community.”

The university and Jazzpher’s friends have identified Steve William Homan, owner of the bar, as the attacker.

A protest is planned in front of the bar where the incident took place. Those participating are asked to meet at First Baptist Church, 739 N. 8th St. in Quincy, at 1:30 p.m. At 3 p.m., the group will move on to The Barn at 711 S. Front St. People are asked to bring umbrellas and wear masks.

Both the QPD and Quincy University are asking for people with information to come forward.

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