Over a dozen historically black colleges and universities receive bomb threats this week, FBI investigating

by ian

Ian Patrick, FISM News


This week, reports of bomb threats specifically targeting historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) around the United States circulated through news and social media. The Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) said that they are aware of the sudden uptick in threats and are currently looking into the situation, along with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).

The HBCUs that received the threats issued multiple warnings to their campuses, students, and staff on what to do. The threats seem to have happened over the course of two days, on Monday and Tuesday of this week.

There were six schools that were first reported as receiving these threats. They include Albany State University in Georgia; Southern University and A&M College in Louisiana; Bowie State University in Maryland; Howard University in Washington D.C.; Bethune-Cookman University in Florida; and Delaware State University.

These schools took precautions such as shutting down campuses and classes until a sweep was able to be performed of all school buildings. All the universities received an “all-clear” from authorities, ensuring there was no real threat.

Soon after, multiple other HBCUs reported receiving similar threats and taking similar precautions. These include Morgan State University in Maryland; Spelman College in Georgia; Xavier University of Louisiana; Kentucky State University; Edward Waters University in Florida; Fort Valley State University in Georgia; University of the District of Columbia; Mississippi Valley State University; Alcorn State University in Mississippi; Coppin State University in Maryland; Tougaloo College in Mississippi; and Jackson State University in Mississippi.

Some of these campuses have been cleared while others are still in lockdown awaiting a sweep and investigation.

Many of the staff at these institutions believe that these attacks are related to the start of Black History Month. Howard University President Dr. Wayne A. I. Frederick released a statement saying with this month in mind “we must remember what the Black community has endured, overcome and achieved despite the threats against us and the hate we have received.”

Representative Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), chairman of the Committee on Homeland Security, made a similar comment on Tuesday saying, “It is not lost on me that these threats are targeting African American educational institutions at a time when we are observing Black History Month.”

Other politicians and leaders such as Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ), Georgia politician Stacey Abrams, and Martin Luther King III gave similar addresses on the topic.

In a statement to CBS News, the FBI confirmed that they are “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 FBI further encouraged citizens to report anything suspicious.

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki condemned the “disturbing threats” when she was asked about the situation at a press briefing on Tuesday. “We have been long supporters and have made historic investments in HBCUs and deeply value the significant role they continue to play in advancing opportunity for Black students across America,” she added.

As of this writing, there are no plans from the Biden administration to make trips to any of the aforementioned schools. Psaki did confirm that the “homeland security advisor is in close touch with law enforcement authorities at a federal and local level.”