FBI Probes Threats to HBCUs as 13 Targeted With Bomb Calls in a Day

A new wave of bomb threats hit over a dozen more historically Black colleges and universities (HBCU) on Tuesday morning. This came only a day after six similar threats were made on Monday, prompting the involvement of the FBI.

On Monday, the FBI told Newsweek that it is looking into a recent trend of bomb threats with local law enforcement partners that dates back to earlier this month.

"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 FBI said in its statement. "As always, we would like to remind members of the public that if they observe anything suspicious to report it to law enforcement immediately."

When reached for comment on the latest threats made on Tuesday—the first day of Black History Month—the FBI told Newsweek it had no updates and referenced its previous statement.

The bomb threats came in the early hours of Tuesday morning and impacted the following schools, according to CNN: Alcorn State University in Lorman, Mississippi; Coppin State University in Baltimore, Maryland; Edward Waters University in Jacksonville, Florida; Fort Valley State University in Fort Valley, Georgia; Howard University in Washington, D.C.; Jackson State University in Jackson, Mississippi; Kentucky State University in Frankfort, Kentucky; Morgan State University in Baltimore; Mississippi Valley State University near Itta Bena, Mississippi; Spelman University in Atlanta, Georgia; Tougaloo College in Tougaloo, Mississippi; the University of the District of Columbia; and, Xavier University in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Of the schools impacted, Howard University is notable as it received a bomb threat on Monday morning as well. It was also part of a round of bomb threats made against HBCUs on January 5, making it the only school targeted each in each wave.

hbcus bomb threats again
A further 13 bomb threats were made against various HBCUs on Tuesday, part of a growing trend in the last month. Here, a sign for Spelman College in Atlanta. Raymond Boyd/Getty Images

So far, of the schools targeted on Tuesday, only Tougaloo College, Jackson State University, and Howard University have had their campuses cleared by law enforcement. Howard was also the first campus to be cleared on Monday. Despite the all-clear from police, Tougaloo College will remain virtual for the rest of the day.

"Although the campus has been cleared, for safety precautions, there will be no in-person classes/activities, and employees and students should not commute to the campus," a statement shared on Tougaloo's website read. " All faculty and staff will work remotely today."

On Monday, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said that the threats being made against HBCUs "are certainly disturbing."

Democrat Representatives Adam Schiff and André Carson also issued a joint statement to Newsweek on Monday condemning the threats.

"We are deeply disturbed by the bomb threats today against at least six Historically Black Colleges and Universities, which follow a series of similar threats made earlier this month," the statement read. "This afternoon, the Intelligence Committee requested information from the FBI on these threats. We expect to be briefed at an appropriate time. There is no denying the surge of racially-motivated violent extremism and the threat it poses to our nation. We will remain focused on ensuring that all appropriate resources are utilized to identify and prosecute the perpetrators of these threats, and to combat the scourge of white supremacist violence and terrorism."