At 23 years old, the recently commissioned Army second lieutenant was in preparations to move to Fort Leonard, Missouri where he would begin training in defending the homefront against chemical attacks.
Three days before this plan was set in motion, he was killed tragically after Sean C. Urbanski, a white student at the University of Maryland fatally stabbed Richard.
Sunday [May 21, 2017], authorities made public that they were investigating the murder as a possible hate crime, making reference to Urbanski’s involvement with “Alt Reich: Nation”, a seemingly white supremacist group on Facebook.
“Nothing is meant as true,” Alex Goodman, the 19-year old administrator of the group, told New York times. “We follow none of the beliefs.”
According to Goodman and creator Matthew Lamb, the page was founded as a satirical joke making fun of the alt-right movement.
“It’s too early to speculate about whether or not it was a hate group or a hate page,” said John Erzen on behalf of the State’s Attorney in Prince George County.
State’s Attorney Angela D. Alsobrooks affrimed on Monday during a news conference that the killer’s motive remains unclear.
“We do not have enough evidence to say conclusively whether this is a hate crime,” Alsobrooks said Monday in a news conference.
According to police, Collins was visiting two students on the University of Maryland’s campus when he was stabbed some time around 3 a.m. Saturday morning while waiting for an Uber outside of a dorm.
Authorities say the attack, caught on surveillance camera, was unprovoked.
“Richard was an outstanding individual,” said Lt. Col. Joel Thomas, the head of the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps. “He was an outstanding cadet. He was an outstanding member of this campus community.”