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New Mexico head coach Craig Neal gestures to his team during a game at WisePies Arena on Saturday. Regarding Neal's allegations of threats made against his son, Cullen, UNMPD Chief Kevin McCade in a statement said "we want to emphasize that we consider them to be of a serious nature and entirely consistent with how Coach Neal characterized them to the media and police."

New Mexico head coach Craig Neal gestures to his team during a game at WisePies Arena on Saturday. Regarding Neal's allegations of threats made against his son, Cullen, UNMPD Chief Kevin McCade in a statement said "we want to emphasize that we consider them to be of a serious nature and entirely consistent with how Coach Neal characterized them to the media and police."

UNMPD calls threats against Cullen Neal serious

UNM Police Department officials deemed threats made to Cullen Neal as “of a serious nature and entirely consistent” with head coach Craig Neal’s description last week, UNMPD Chief Kevin McCabe said in a statement issued Wednesday afternoon.

During his pregame press conference last Thursday, Craig Neal said that Cullen Neal, his son and the starting point guard on the New Mexico men’s basketball team, had received death threats that caused him to switch phone numbers and delete his accounts on social media platforms.

A copyrighted story published in Wednesday’s Albuquerque Journal stated that the Neals and Vice President for Athletics Paul Krebs met with UNMPD Deputy Police Chief Christine Chester on Sunday. According to the Journal story, UNMPD spokesman Lt. Tim Stump said Craig Neal referred to harassment against his son and that death threats were never mentioned.

The McCabe statement mentioned safety as the No. 1 concern for UNM and its police force, and that UNMPD investigates these incidents seriously and thoroughly.

“We also respect the right of a victim to choose not to file a report,” McCabe said in the statement. “We want to be clear that any student concerned about threats should feel safe reporting them to campus police. We work every day to assure student safety.”

McCabe stated UNMPD has no further comments on the matter at this time. 

Craig Neal declined to comment on the matter when asked about it in his postgame press conference Wednesday evening.

J.R. Oppenheim is the assistant sports editor for the Daily Lobo. He primarily covers men’s basketball and women’s soccer. Contact him at assistantsports@dailylobo.com or on Twitter 
@JROppenheim.

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