Sophia Rosing is a University of Kentucky student arrested after police say she attacked a Black woman working as a dorm building desk clerk and used racist slurs in a November 6, 2022, incident caught on video. Rosing, 22, was charged with assault, public intoxication and disorderly conduct, Fayette County jail records show. Rosing can be heard in the viral video saying the n-word more than 200 times.
Rosing’s attorney, Fred Peters, told NBC News on November 8, “She’s going to withdraw from the university today or tomorrow. She’s a very, very embarrassed and humiliated young lady.” He said he is “getting her into some kind of treatment program and sensitivity program to help her through this situation” and told NBC News she will receive treatment for “several things.” Peters added, “She’s going to get help, that’s all I can say.”
The video was shared on social media by the victim, Kylah Spring, a University of Kentucky freshman and student employee who was working at the front desk of the Boyd Hall dorm building when the incident occurred. The video was removed by Instagram and TikTok for violating the platform’s rules, according to Spring. But it was re-uploaded on YouTube by the Kentucky Kernel.
University of Kentucky said in a statement, “Early this morning, a disturbing incident was captured on video in a residence hall. The video is deeply offensive, and we take it very seriously. Our Office of Student Conduct also is conducting an immediate review, and our Student Success teams are reaching out to the student victims who were subject to this behavior to offer support.”
UK added, “To be clear: we condemn this behavior and will not tolerate it under any circumstance. The safety and well-being of our community has been — and will continue to be — our top priority.” Rosing could not be reached for comment by Heavy.
Spring wrote on Facebook, “The crazy thing is I love my school, and I want to be successful here. I didn’t deserve this I wear my school across my chest everyday and I may have a hard time but I never thought this would happen to me. I matter just as much as the next person! I pray these people hear me and stand with me.”
Here’s what you need to know about Sophia Rosing and the attack caught on viral video:
1. Sophia Rosing Can Be Heard in the Video Using a Racist Slur Several Times & Seen Hitting Kylah Spring, After Trying to Get Into the Dorm While ‘Very Drunk’
Spring, a fine arts student from Memphis, Tennessee, wrote on Facebook that she was attacked while working her student job. She said she was called “n*****” repeatedly and the attacker, since identified as Sophia Rosing, bit her on the arm multiple times.
Spring wrote, “I am a desk clerk at Boyd Hall at the University of Kentucky and it is part of my job to notify the on call RA of any drunk students who look unwell. This girl was very drunk upon entry of the residence so I asked if she was okay and continued to try and get her to sit down, also she doesn’t seem to be a resident so I tried to keep her from going in the elevator. My friend was also bit and swung at by this girl as well as a few others including the OFFICER.”
She posted videos of the incident that show Rosing repeating the racist slur several times and assaulting Spring and another student. Rosing also can be seen in a video clip repeating the slur over and over as a University of Kentucky police officer tries to handcuff her. Spring said the incident happened at about 1 a.m.
In a video posted by Spring on Sunday morning, she said, “She did not look like a resident, so I did not open the door. But when she came in, she stumbled over across the front desk over to the elevator and she started talking to the elevator.”
Spring said she asked Rosing if she was OK, and, “She continues to look at me and starts calling me a n*****. … She kept saying it, and so I went back inside of the office to go and get the number of the RA on call. And once I got back, I tried to go and sit her down and keep her from going into the elevator, because she did not look like a resident, again she did not have a phone with her, she did not have an ID card. The only reason the elevator opened was because there was another student getting off. And so I jumped in, I tried to just gently move her to the side and be like, ‘Hey could you just come over and sit here for me.'”
Spring said, “She just kept going, ‘No n*****, you f***** n*****, you’re a b****, you’re a n****, do my chores b****. And she kept doing that while I was trying to sit her down. She bit me along my arm, she punched me in my face. … She kicked me in my stomach as well. She tried to run me over with a grocery cart that was in the lobby, she bit my friend as well as another girl that tried to help me deescalate the situation. … The girl was drunk, so she was falling over, so we’re just trying to get her to sit down. … She kept saying things like, ‘do my chores,’ ‘it’s not my fault that you’re Black,’ ‘it’s not my fault you’re ugly,’ ‘you’re f***** ugly and Black.'”
Spring added, “This girl just continuously was berating me, not only with her words, but with her hands and her body and just hurting me. The police finally arrived, the girl continued to try to bite the police officer as well as kick the police officer, they couldn’t really get that much information out of her. She was arrested. … I do not want this to turn into another situation where I don’t get the justice I deserve.”
2. Rosing Is From Fort Mitchell, Kentucky, & Attended Beechwood High School
Rosing deleted or made most of her social media private, but her Facebook page remains online. According to her now-deleted social media, Rosing is from Fort Mitchell, Kentucky, a city of about 8,200 in Kenton County. Rosing graduated from Beechwood High School in 2019.
Rosing is a senior at the University of Kentucky set to graduate with the class of 2023, according to her now-deleted social media pages. She is a double major studying business marketing and merchandising, apparel and textiles, according to her LinkedIn profile. Rosing was also a member of College Fashionista, a community of college-aged fashion and beauty influencers, but the group cut ties with her after the video went viral.
A photo posted on Twitter shows Rosing was kicked out of a Lexington bar before her arrest on the UK campus.
Patricia Luna, who witnessed the incident in the dorm, told WKYT, “I heard a slap and then I heard racial slurs and I was like, ‘That’s not okay so I’m not gonna leave and I’m gonna pull out my phone so I can record. The girl that was being harassed, she handled that so beautifully. She was always so professional and kind and didn’t turn to violence even though Sophia gave her every single reason to want to fight back.”
3. Sophia Rosing Lost a Brand Ambassador Deal With Dillard’s After the Video Went Viral & a Group of College-Aged Influencers Also Cut Ties With Her
Sophia Rosing had a brand ambassador deal with Dillard’s department store, according to a now-deleted post. On LinkedIn, Rosing wrote, “I have had an internship in social media marketing and with a visual merchandising manager. Proudly apart of Dillard’s Campus Collective program!”
Dillard’s said in a social media comment that they have cut ties with Rosing after the incident. The company tweeted, “Dillards does not condone this behavior. Her relationship with Dillard’s has been terminated immediately.”
College Fashionista wrote on Facebook, “Today we learned of a video involving a College Fashionista member physically and verbally assaulting two Black women. At Her Campus Media and College Fashionista, we vehemently denounce this abhorrent behavior and do not condone racism or hate in any form. We unapologetically stand in support of BIPOC communities and affirm that Black lives matter. Full stop. Immediately upon being informed of the incident, we removed the member from our community and terminated her affiliation with any of our programs.”
College Fashionista added, “We strive to ensure all of our members reflect our values, but in this case we failed. Here’s how we’ll be taking accountability moving forward: Sophia Rosing was removed from the College Fashionista community effective immediately. We will be conducting an immediate detailed review of our member management practices, including our vetting processes, internal training, and beyond.”
The group posted a photo saying, “Black Lives Matter. Period,” and wrote, “Thank you to the community for bringing this to our attention. Thank you for raising your voices and holding us accountable. We sincerely apologize for the immense hurt caused to the individuals involved and to our wider community.”
Students and alumni have called for the University of Kentucky to expel Rosing as a result of her actions. Some have said on social media she is affiliated with a sorority, but it was not immediately clear if that is true, and if so, which sorority she belongs to.
UK freshman Julian Downey told WKYT, “I was just real disappointed to see one of my fellow students was acting that way towards another one of my fellow students and I just hope everybody at UK always feels safe and comfortable and obviously that’s not what happened.”
Sophomore Sienna Edison-Turner told the news station, “The amount of racism that you still see to this day means that people are still teaching their children to still live like the past and that’s not how it is anymore. They need to grow up and live in this century.”
4. University of Kentucky’s President Said in a Message the Actions in the Video ‘Reflect Violence, Which Is Never Acceptable, and a Denial of the Humanity of Members of Our Community’
University of Kentucky President Eli Capilouto said in a message to the UK campus community, “Early this morning, an incident involving violence against our students, racial slurs and offensive language occurred in one of our residence halls. One of the victims was a student employee who was working an overnight shift at the front desk. From my view of a video of the incident, the student worker acted with professionalism, restraint and discretion.”
Capilouto added, “As we know more details about what happened, we will share more information. On Friday, I shared with the campus the responsibilities we have to each other as a community — to protect the free expression of ideas and opinions and to respect each other — everyone on this campus — as we strive to create a community of belonging.”
He wrote, “The video images I have seen do not honor our responsibilities to each other. They reflect violence, which is never acceptable, and a denial of the humanity of members of our community. They do not reflect civil discourse. They are deeply antithetical to what we are and what we always want to be as a community. We will fully investigate what happened last night, but we also must learn from this moment and do better as a community.”
The Kentucky president continued, “There is no more important responsibility we have — or commitment we must make — than to treat each person — each person — on this campus as people who have equal intrinsic worth and value. Let us take this moment, painful and ugly though it is, to remind ourselves of the work we must remain committed to as a community where everyone is welcome and feels that they belong.”
5. Sophia Rosing Was Released From the Fayette County Jail on $10,000 Bond & Faces a Felony Charge
According to Fayette County Jail records, Sophia Nicole Rosing was booked at 3:51 a.m. after she was arrested by the University of Kentucky Police Department. She was charged with alcohol intoxication in a public place, third-degree assault on a police officer, fourth-degree assault and second-degree disorderly conduct, records show.
Rosing was released from custody Monday night, November 7, after appearing in court and pleading not guilty, records show. She was initially booked into the jail under the name Jane Doe, but university officials confirmed her identity. Rosing is not allowed to drink alcohol and is barred from contacting Spring or going to Boyd Hall while free on bail, according to court records. A video shows her covering her head as she leaves the jail, ignoring questions from reporters.
Rosing left the jail after being bonded out by her parents, Jill Rosing and Don Rosing, according to The Daily Mail, which obtained photos showing her leaving in the same outfit she wore during her arrest. Her parents can be seen in the video posted on Twitter.
If convicted of third-degree assault, a class D felony, Rosing faces between one to five years in prison, according to Kentucky state law. The other charges, including fourth-degree assault, are misdemeanors. Kentucky does have a hate crime law, but it was not immediately clear if that would apply in this case. The hate crime law is a sentencing enhancement a judge can add if a person is found guilty of a crime, but it is not a separate charge in Kentucky, according to state law.