Bomb threat to Shawnee’s campus spurs law enforcement investigation, classes canceled


PORTSMOUTH — At approximately 3:42 p.m. on Tuesday, July 12, Shawnee State University’s Department of Public Safety (DPS) issued an alert indicating that the campus received an “unsubstantiated bomb threat to classroom buildings.”

In the alert sent out by SSU, the university urged the campus community to stay calm.

Elizabeth Blevins, Director of Marketing and Communications at SSU, indicated that DPS had evacuated campus buildings and that the Portsmouth Police Department and the Portsmouth Fire Department were assisting in sweeping the area.

Blevins clarified that the threat was contained to one area of the university and that law enforcement agencies were exercising great care to ensure the safety of those on campus.

“It was a general classroom, what the threat was,” Blevins said. “In an abundance of caution, we are vacating all the buildings on campus excluding housing. [We are] giving law enforcement enough time to adequately sweep all of those buildings,” she added.

SSU’s classes for the rest of the day were canceled in response to the threat, and all University offices were closed for the remainder of the day.

Blevins said that Jon Peters, Director of SSU’s Department of Public Safety, updated her to communicate that at press time, the officers were about thirty minutes away from issuing the all-clear following a thorough sweep of the area.

According to Blevins, there are no leads as to who made the threat at this time. Since the Portsmouth Police Department took the initial call from the suspect issuing the threat, they will take the lead on the investigation.

Blevins indicated that everyone on campus is safe.

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