Howard University and Bowie State University were among a handful of historically Black colleges and universities that received bomb threats Monday morning — the second time this month that HBCUs, including Howard, have been targeted with such threats.
The threats occurred at Southern University and A&M College in Louisiana, Howard University in Washington, D.C., Bethune-Cookman University in Florida, Albany State University in Georgia, Bowie State University in Maryland, and Delaware State University.
The threats disrupted each campus and have led to police investigations.
Classes were canceled at five of the schools and students were told to remain in their dorm rooms until an all-clear is issued. University operations were also suspended until further notice.
A D.C. police spokesperson confirmed to CNN that Howard University was cleared “with no hazardous materials found.”
Howard University Police Chief Marcus Lyles said in a statement the threats haven’t “yielded any credible danger” but created “an unnecessary mental burden on individuals trying to learn and work on our campus.”
“Make no mistake; we have remained on alert on campus since the very first threat and have not stopped our work of assessment and scaled surveillance for suspicious activity,” he said. “We are committed to, and confident in the work of our on-campus police and partnerships with regional agencies in ensuring safety and stability for our campus community.”
In Maryland, the city of Bowie’s police department received a phone call before 6 a.m. with a bomb threat targeting the university, state police said in a statement.
School officials coordinated with law enforcement agencies and issued a campus alert shortly after 7:30 a.m.
Shortly before 2 p.m., the university lifted a shelter-in-place order and law enforcement found no devices on campus. However, classes will be conducted virtually and employee telework is authorized for Monday.
The spring semester at Bowie State started Jan. 24.
“The preliminary investigation indicates multiple threats were made to a number of historically black colleges and universities today, including Bowie State University,” state police said. “Federal, state and local law enforcement partners are on the scene working together conducting a thorough search of the campus.”
Albany State, located in Albany, Georgia, posted a statement on its website Monday all classes and university operations are postponed until further notice. Because dining halls are also closed, a plan remains underway to provide residential students meals.
“We are working with the proper authorities to thoroughly investigate this potential threat,” the school said in a statement.
On Jan. 5, at least three HBCUs, including Howard University, received bomb threats. Nothing was found on any of the campuses that received threats, university officials said.