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September 27, 2012

Recent bomb threats deemed “non-credible”

Three bomb threats were discovered in Pittsburgh campus buildings recently. An announcement posted on the Pitt police web page stated that no explosives were found. Because police deemed the threats “non-credible,” the emergency notification system was not used and no buildings were evacuated.

According to police, a handwritten bomb threat dated Sept. 17 was found Sept. 19 in Lawrence Hall. “Given both the content of the note and the passage of time, it was assessed by law enforcement to be a non-credible threat,” the post stated. On Sept. 24, undated handwritten notes with language identical to the earlier threat were found in Lawrence and Posvar halls. “These threats also were assessed by law enforcement, including the Joint Terrorism Task Force, and were determined to be non-credible,” the post stated.

Robert Hill, vice chancellor for Public Affairs, told the University Times on Wednesday that he had no information on any arrests in connection with the threats. Hill would not comment on whether there appears to be any connection to bomb threats that forced evacuations earlier this month on college campuses including the University of Texas, North Dakota State and Hiram College or to threats that disrupted the University’s Pittsburgh campus last spring.

University officials said they received 52 total threats targeting 160 buildings last spring, which led to 136 evacuations. Some of those threats were scrawled on bathroom walls, while others were sent via email. Federal authorities last month indicted Scottish nationalist Adam Stuart Busby in connection with more than 40 emailed threats but no one has been charged in connection with last spring’s written threats. (See Aug. 30 University Times.)

—Kimberly K. Barlow

Filed under: Feature,Volume 45 Issue 3

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