The community of Menomonie, Wisconsin, is reeling after a Saudi exchange student was beaten to death outside a local pizza restaurant, NBC News reports. Hussain Saeed Alnahdi, 24, was an exchange student studying business at University of Wisconsin-Stout. On Sunday at around 2am, he was attacked by an unknown assailant, described only as a white male about 6 feet tall, outside Toppers Pizza in downtown Menomonie. USA Today reports that the local community has pooled resources to offer a $20,000 reward for information about the killer, who remains at large. Local Saudi students said they expected that number to grow as families back in Saudi Arabia became aware of the reward pool.
Menomonie police say they do not yet know the motive behind the attack, which they acknowledge could be a hate crime. Alnahdi's friends—both Saudi and American—were distraught at the news. "He is one of the best friends I've ever had and life will be a little darker without him here to light it up," Alnahdi's roommate, Tommy Hutson, said. "If I ever spoke to someone that thought negatively of Saudis or Muslims I would tell them they needed to speak to Hussain and they would feel differently." For now, the university is arranging a memorial service Thursday night, while police continue their search for the attacker. (Read more Wisconsin stories.)