UC investigating anonymous phone threat, Twitter bomb threat

Published: Sep. 4, 2014 at 7:29 AM EDT
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(File photo)
(File photo)

(FOX19) - The University of Cincinnati campus is finally winding down after an unusual afternoon on Wednesday, and they're not the only school breathing a sigh of relief.

Shortly after noon on Wednesday, the university received a single anonymous phone call threatening "to come to campus and shoot people."

Around the same time, the UC Police Department also said a series of bomb threats were made on Twitter against multiple schools across Ohio, including UC.

"One of our offices on campus received a telephone call from an anonymous individual, of course, saying that they're going to come to campus and shoot a whole bunch of people," said Interim Chief Jeff Corcoran with the UC Police Department.

Campus safety leaders don't believe the threat is local or credible, but say they aren't writing it off.

"We're a community of 50,000 people. We're a much larger institution, and potentially a much more attractive target," Corcoran said.

"We're a community of 50,000 people. We're a much larger institution, and potentially a much more attractive target," Corcoran said.

The level of the threat's credibility dictates the level of response. On Wednesday, the campus saw a heavier police presence, and a warning message sent to the campus community.

"They do a good job of notifying us in time and they say, even though it may not be credible, they're still taking the action to make it safe for everybody," said student Zach Smith.

Brad Stapleton, a second-year student, says some of his friends even had professors give them the option of not coming to class.

UC officials are asking everyone to keep their eyes open while they investigate. They're working with the FBI and the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation.

UC tested their emergency alert system on Wednesday at noon. Only 45 minutes later, the same notification system sent out the alert that someone threatened to open fire.

FOX19 NOW checked with officials at Xavier University and Miami University to see if their campuses were targeted. A spokesperson for each university says they received no threats on Wednesday.

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