Arson and Burglary Committed at Groundwork Bookstore

Photo courtesy of Hrishikesh Barokar.

Unknown suspects smashed the glass door entrance to the Groundwork Bookstore yesterday morning, knocking over bookshelves and lighting a bookcase on fire, causing $500 in damage.

Founded in 1973, Groundwork Books is UC San Diego’s student-run bookstore that offers a variety of social justice books related to workers, women, black, Latinx, indigenous, and critical histories. The store was the primary source for class texts until the opening of the Price Center Bookstore.

The perpetrator(s) did not steal anything and did not leave a note detailing why they broke in.

Photo courtesy of Hrishikesh Barokar

Photo courtesy of Hrishikesh Barokar

In a statement released on Monday, the Groundwork Books membership wrote that it believes this crime is connected to a recent rise in far-right and white supremacist activity at universities. In January, a UCSD student affiliated with the white supremacist group Identity Evropa disrupted a lecture with the intention to harass students, also dropping banners and distributing flyers on campus.

“Driven and emboldened by the rising right-wing momentum, someone was motivated to commit a felony against a student-run community bookstore on the basis of its political character,” the statement says. “Because this is an attack on a truly independent student-run organization, this concerns the entire student body regardless of political orientation.”

No one has been apprehended for the crime and the investigation is ongoing.

Mo Elew is an Assistant News Editor at The Triton. Follow him @solomune.

  • Edward Beksinski

    Good Morning Mo,

    I’m a volunteer investigator for the SPLC. We are always taking submissions for real events however I would like to stress that we have noted the earlier event mentioned in the article (the class disruption) is a likely fabrication. The false report could have been a member of the community or even a member of the alt-right attempting to undermine the reputation of our reporting institutions.

    • modernhumor

      The class disruption was widely covered in the local press.

    • Edward Beksinski

      Yes understood. However the source is one person and journalistic standards are not uniform across the nation. In some of the articles published, a police report is cited but note that the police report was filed by the individual who made the claim, not by a responding officer. You can verify this for yourself.

      Also please note a critical distinction between “widely covered” and “accurately covered. ”

      Finally, I would actually dispute it was widely covered.

    • modernhumor

      …and witnessed by an an entire classroom.