Duke Chapel's statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee vandalized

A statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee that is part Duke Chapel on Duke University's campus in Durham (ABC11 Photojournalist Chris Hart)

A statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee that is part Duke Chapel has been vandalized.

It was discovered Thursday morning that the statue on Duke University's campus had been defaced.

The statue is one of 10 historical figures adorning the exterior of the chapel, according to Duke Today.

Duke officials are investigating the incident.

In a statement Thursday morning, President Vincent Price condemned the vandalism:

"Duke Chapel is a place of sanctuary and refuge that belongs to every member of the Duke community. Each of us deserves a voice in determining how to address the questions raised by the statues of Robert E. Lee and others, and confront the darker moments in our nation's history," Price said. "For an individual or group of individuals to take matters into their own hands and vandalize a house of worship undermines the right, protected in our Commitment to Diversity and Inclusion, of every Duke student and employee to participate fully in university life."

Lee's figure has adorned the entrance of Duke Chapel since 1932. He is positioned between statues of Thomas Jefferson and Sidney Lanier, a poet who served in the Confederate Army.

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