CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WNCN) – The Confederate monument known as Silent Sam will be reinstalled within 90 days, according to a member of the UNC System Board of Governors.
Thom Goolsby posted to Twitter and YouTube saying the monument will go back up as required by state law.
“Criminals who destroyed state property at UNC and police who did nothing will be held accountable,” Goolsby wrote.
The monument on the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill campus was torn down Monday night by protestors.
A CBS 17 crew went to UNC on Thursday morning to find where monument is being held.
The answers from campus police’s communications office and Vice Chancellor of Communications Joel Curran were nearly identical.
“Well, right now, it is being evaluated, and it is in a safe and secure location,” Curran said. “That is what we believe is the best process at this time.”
The SBI and the UNC Department of Public Safety are investigating the toppling.
Orange County’s District Attorney Jim Woodall said earlier in the week he anticipates the investigation will take several days.
A statement from UNC System and UNC-Chapel Hill leaders said at no time were law enforcement officers told to allow the statue to be taken down.
“During the event, we rely on the experience and judgment of law enforcement to make decisions on the ground, keeping safety as the top priority,” the statement said.
Goolsby’s comments come a day after the state historical commission voted to keep Confederate monuments on the North Carolina capitol grounds.
Goolsby serves as a member of the UNC Board of Governors. He served as a state senator from Jan. 2011 to Aug. 2014 as a Republican representing New Hanover county.
“We will make sure the laws of our state are enforced,” Goolsby said in a YouTube video. “We will not allow anarchy to reign on our campuses.”
UNC officials urged students not to attend a possible rally Saturday. The school said in a tweet that it is “working closely with town officials and law enforcement to ensure the safety of our communities.”
It continued: “We respect and believe in the First Amendment, the Campus Free Speech Act and the rights of peaceful protestors.”
The 2015 law allows for an “object of remembrance” to be moved or removed in two circumstances: when necessary for preservation or “when necessary for construction, renovation, or reconfiguration of buildings, open spaces, parking, or transportation projects.”
The law says if a qualifying monument moves, it has to go to “a site of similar prominence, honor, visibility, availability and access…” The monument can’t go to a museum, cemetery or mausoleum unless that’s where it was originally.
According to UNC’s website, the North Carolina division of the United Daughters of the Confederacy commissioned the memorial in 1913 to honor the 321 UNC alumni who died fighting for the Confederacy in the Civil War.
The UNC website notes that Silent Sam is a statue of a soldier carrying a rifle, but he has no cartridge box with ammunition and is thus silent.