Police said a Bethany College student and his friend were injured when several men assaulted them outside an off-campus bar early Sunday during the college's homecoming weekend.
Bethany Police Chief Larry Palmer said officers responded to the corner of Richardson and Fair streets concerning a report of two white men being beaten and kicked in the face by "five or six" black men. One of the alleged victims is a student at Bethany, while the other is a West Virginia University student who was visiting over the weekend. Palmer did not say whether all the suspects are Bethany students.
Palmer said based on the information police have gathered, they are investigating the possibility the attack was racially motivated. Reports indicate "a white male was talking to a black female, and that caused some problems with the black males," he said.
According to Palmer, the two alleged victims suffered concussions and lacerations. He said they refused transport by paramedics but later went to a hospital to seek treatment.
No one was arrested at the scene, and Palmer said police are still interviewing witnesses and suspects.
Information has been turned over to the Brooke County Prosecutor's Office, he noted.
"I anticipate there being one or more arrests within a week or so," Palmer said.
College officials said they are aware of the incident and are cooperating with authorities.
"A few of our students were involved in an altercation off campus that resulted in injury to one of our students," said college spokeswoman Rebecca Rose. "While all the details of this event are still being determined, the Bethany College Office of Student Life and the Office of Safety and Security are investigating this incident in conjunction with local law enforcement."