Mississippi school teacher ID’d as suspect in Ole Miss Confederate statue vandalism

Published 7:45 am Monday, June 1, 2020

A Mississippi school teacher has been identified as the suspect in vandalizing a Confederate statue on the Ole Miss campus.

The University of Mississippi officially identified Zachary Borenstein as the suspect.

He has been arrested and charged with injuring, destroying or defacing certain cemetery property, public buildings, schools or churches, or property thereof, which is classified as a felony.

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In the act of vandalizing the statue, the words “spiritual genocide” were spray-painted in black on every side of the statue, accompanied by blood red handprints. Borenstein was arrested on the scene by an officer with the University Police Department.

Borenstein will be arraigned on Monday, June 1, by a Lafayette County Justice Court judge, where bond will be set.

Borenstein is a former student of the University, having recently graduated with a master of arts degree.

The Clarion Ledger newspaper reported that Borenstein participated in the Mississippi Teacher Corps, a program incentivizing teachers to serve in underserved areas. He was listed as a teacher in the Hollandale School District.