At least 18 Historically Black Colleges and Universities received bomb threats this week which launched police investigations, lockdowns and class cancellations or virtual instructions.
The threats Monday and Tuesday, the first day of Black History Month, were directed at:
- Albany State University
- Alcorn State University
- Bethune-Cookman College
- Bowie State University
- Coppin State University
- Delaware State University
- Edward Waters University
- Fort Valley State University
- Howard University
- Kentucky State University
- Jackson State University
- Mississippi Valley State University
- Morgan State University
- Southern University and A&M College
- Spelman College
- Tougaloo College
- University of the District of Columbia
- Xavier University
On Jan. 5, three HBCUs, including Howard, received bomb threats.
The FBI is working with law enforcement agencies to investigate, according to ABC News.
“As always, we would like to remind members of the public that if they observe anything suspicious to report it to law enforcement immediately,” the FBI said in a statement.
Thomas Chittium, acting deputy director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives, also said agents from the bureau are responding.
“We can confirm that ATF has responded,” said Chittum, adding, “Of course, it is a federal crime to use interstate facilities to make a bomb threat, and so ATF will provide our investigative expertise and support to that investigation, but obviously, the facts are preliminary and unfolding.”
Police issued an “all-clear” for the Howard University campus at 6:22 a.m. after a bomb threat that came two hours earlier, according to NPR. Police searched the campus of Delaware State University until early afternoon and didn’t find a bomb, according to the outlet.
Meanwhile, Bethune-Cookman University and Southern University A&M College went into lockdown after the threats, with Southern canceling classes, according to NPR, noting Bethune-Cookman later lifted the lockdown and Southern issued an all-clear.
Albany State University ended up closing its campus and postponing classes and operations until further notice, according to NPR. Bowie State University students and employees shifted to virtual work and lifted a shelter-in-place order by early afternoon.
Rust College, in Holly Springs, Mississippi, which did not receive a bomb threat, increased police presence on campus Tuesday and switched to virtual learning until further notice. Three HBCUs in the state received threats.