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Bomb Threats Received At Howard, Southern U, Other HBCUs For Second Time in Weeks

Six different Black colleges were the targets of the threats, a day before Black History Month begins.

Howard University was among at least six HBCUs that received bomb threats Monday morning (Jan. 31), according to social media and campus news releases, forcing disruptions to classes at some and cancellations at others.

In addition to Howard, Southern University and A&M College, Bethune-Cookman University, Albany State University, Bowie State University and Delaware State University each received the threats. It was the second time since early January that multiple HBCU campuses had to deal with such threats.

The reported threats come a day before the beginning of Black History Month, but it is unclear if there was any correlation.

In a statement to BET.com, the FBI said it is monitoring the threats, but did not specify whether or not there is an investigation for HBCUs.

"The FBI is aware of the series of bomb threats around the country and we are working with our law enforcement partners to address any potential threats," the statement said.

According to CNN, no explosive materials were found on any of the campuses that reported the threats.

Washington D.C. Metro Police and Howard’s campus issued an alert via social media at 4:35 a.m. Monday, warning students, staff and faculty to stay away from certain areas and to keep cellphones handy. Nothing was found on Howard’s campus, NBC Washington reported.

Similarly, Southern University in Baton Rouge, La., lockdown and canceled classes while authorities investigate and suspended operations.

“We are doing everything possible to ensure that our students and staff on campus are safe during this lockdown,” Southern president Ray L. Belton tweeted. “Law enforcement agencies continue to investigate this heinous threat.”

Meanwhile, Bowie State University in Bowie, Md., also chose to lockdown its campus and cease operations for the day while an investigation proceeds. Students, staff and faculty were advised to shelter in place. Administrators announced that classes would be given through virtual means. Albany State University in Albany, Ga., tweeted that its academic buildings had received a bomb threat and warned students and faculty to avoid coming to campus until an all-clear message can be issued.

RELATED: Howard, Spelman, Several Other HCBU Campuses Receive Bomb Threats, Causing Lockdowns, Evacuations


Bomb threats were sent to eight HBCUs on Jan. 5, one day before the first anniversary of the Jan. 6, U.S. Capitol riot. University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff, Florida Memorial University, Spelman College, Howard University, Norfolk State University, North Carolina Central University, Prairie View A&M University, and Xavier University were each targets of the threats. Lockdowns of those campuses occurred but no explosive materials were found and it was unclear if the threats were racially motivated, according to The Washington Post, although the threats were all directed at Black colleges.

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