More than 12 HBCU campuses focused on new round of bomb threats

More than a dozen historic Black colleges and universities received bomb threats on Tuesday, the first day of Black History Month.

Howard University was one of the first to issue an on-site shelter order early Tuesday – just a day after the school and several other historic Black colleges and universities faced similar threats.

“A bomb threat against the university is being investigated,” a Howard University warning said, according to NBC Washington. “All persons on campus are advised to hide on site until more information is available.”

The emergency warning was stamped at 3:29 a.m. Tuesday, the first day of Black History Month.

After a probe, a full clear was later issued for Howard. The university did not immediately respond to a request for comment from NBC News.

In addition to Howard, the University of the District of Columbia, Washington, DC, Morgan State University and Coppin State University in Baltimore, Fort Valley State University in Fort Valley, Georgia, Kentucky State University in Frankfort, Kentucky, Xavier University of Louisiana in New Orleans, Edward Waters University in Jacksonville, Florida, Alcorn State University in Lorman, Mississippi, Mississippi Valley State University in Itta Bena, Mississippi, Spelman College in Atlanta, Jackson State University in Jackson, Mississippi, and Tougaloo College in Tougaloo, Mississippi, All reported bomb threats, according to school officials and messages on social media.

Like Howard, Kentucky State, Jackson State, University of Columbia, Tougaloo College and Coppin State issued “all clear” warnings after finding that the threats were not substantiated shortly after reporting the threats.

Additional threats were reported at a number of other colleges and universities. NBC News has not yet confirmed these reports.

‘We have always come out stronger’

Morgan State University President David K. Wilson said in a statement to community members that he was saddened to confirm that the school had received a bomb threat after being asked by several people “whether this is real.”

“Unfortunately, and unfortunately, it is,” he said. “The campus is being searched for building this morning with our residences being the first.”

From about 9 a.m., Wilson said nothing had been discovered in any of the school’s residential facilities because a search was ongoing across the entire campus.

“Morgan is one of the most historic and consistent universities in the nation. Our history has been one where we have gone through all kinds of challenges and disruptions, but we have always emerged stronger,” he said.

“My message to you this morning is to stay strong, to be sustainable, and to prepare yourself to grow the future and lead the world, because our nation and world desperately need more leaders who are drunk in the values ​​we learn here at Morgan, “he said. “Those values ​​are leadership, integrity, innovation, diversity, excellence and respect. Hate is not one of them!”

Wilson also said he hopes the “bomb threats to our National Treasury, and to many of our other sister HBCU institutions, will be aggressively investigated by the FBI.”

FBI is working to tackle ‘potential threats’

In the wake of earlier bomb threats this month, the FBI said it would investigate the matter.

In statements released on Monday and Tuesday, it said it took action after the latest string of threats.

“The FBI is aware of the series of bomb threats around the country and we are working with our law enforcement partners to tackle all possible threats,” the FBI said.

“As always, we want to remind members of the public that if they observe something suspicious, they report it directly to law enforcement,” it added.

A number of schools warned students and staff on social media Tuesday morning of the bomb threats.

In a Facebook post, Edward Waters said the school received an anonymous bomb threat Tuesday morning.

“Immediately effective, all personal activities, lessons and university operations … will be canceled until further notice,” it said, adding that the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office was on campus to investigate the matter.

Fort Valley State University also warned students in a Facebook post that the school received word of a bomb threat. It said campus security personnel and law enforcement are investigating.

“The campus is currently closed,” they said, adding that residential students need to hide on site and stay in their homes. It said all other students and staff should not report to campus until further notice.

String threats against HBCU campuses Monday

On Monday, Howard was one of at least six historic Black colleges and universities to receive bomb threats, leading to lockdowns and police investigations.

Among the other targeted schools were Southern University and A&M College in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Bethune-Cookman University in Daytona Beach, Florida, Albany State University in Georgia, Bowie State University in Maryland and Delaware State University in Dover, according to university officials and social workers. media messages.

At least eight historic Black colleges had on Jan. 5, all of which were unfounded, officials said.

On Monday, Howard spokesman Frank Tramble confirmed that the university had received a bomb threat.

He said Washington and Howard police had issued an “ALL CLEAR” message following an investigation.

“Our priority is the health and safety of our students, faculties and staff and we strongly condemn any action that threatens the safety of our community,” Tramble said at the time.

Ashleigh Fields, 21, the editor-in-chief of Howard’s student newspaper, The Hilltop, said bomb threats are common in the area.

“As a student, it just reminds you to be aware and to be absolutely careful about your surroundings,” Fields said.

She said she hoped the authorities would investigate the matter further.

“It’s sad,” she said. “I hope things are explained to us as students as well, because that’s pretty scary to hear.”

This is an evolving story. Please check back for updates.

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