Yale Employee Who Broke Window Depicting Slavery Will Return to Work

A Yale University dining hall employee who destroyed a stained-glass window depicting slaves in a cotton field last month has accepted his job back after discussions with the university, according to his attorney.

After appearing in court, Corey Menafee, a 38-year-old dining hall employee who is black, admitted that he probably shouldn't have broken the window last month, but found the image disturbing. 

“An image was brought to my attention and I destroyed that image. I probably shouldn’t have, but I did,” he said outside court last week. "It was a disturbing image of what appeared to be two slaves --  a male and a female -- carrying baskets to a cotton field."

After the incident occurred, Yale University officials asked the state not to pursue criminal charges against Menafee for breaking the window, which was inside Calhoun College.

The college was named for former Vice President John C. Calhoun, an ardent defender of slavery during the 19th century and the name has been the subject of protests by students who want it changed. 

Yale also released a statement, saying Menafee “expressed deep remorse” for smashing the window” and would be allowed “to return to a position in a different setting” after serving a five-week unpaid suspension going back to June 21, when he resigned.

“We are willing to take these unusual steps given the unique circumstances of this matter, and it is now up to Mr. Menafee whether he wishes to return to Yale,” the school said in a statement on Monday.

On Wednesday, Menafee's attorney, Patricia Kane, said her client "is delighted to accept Yale's offer."

Menafee will be back at work for his 11 a.m. shift on Monday, Kane said.

Menafee was in court earlier this month to face a felony charge of criminal mischief and a misdemeanor reckless endangerment charge. Kane said Menafee will appear in court again on July 26, but she expects the criminal charges to be dropped. 

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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