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Tulane announced this afternoon that students, faculty and staff may now enter Gibson Quad following a bomb threat that caused the university to close the quad at approximately 10:30 a.m.

An anonymous caller contacted Richardson Memorial Hall at approximately 10:20 a.m. to say that he had placed a bomb in the building. The phone call was redirected to the Tulane University Police Department, which took immediate measures to secure the building.

An emergency-alert text message was sent to students, warning them to avoid Gibson Quad until the situation had been cleared.

“We went with our basic protocol,” TUPD Col. Jack LeBlanc said. “We took the threat seriously, and the decision was made to evacuate the building, as well as buildings that were close to Richardson Memorial Hall. We did a complete canvas of the building. We looked around for anything that seemed suspicious in the building, like packages, book bags and things that were left after the students evacuated. We didn’t find anything at that time.”

LeBlanc said that as part of TUPD’s protocol, the New Orleans Police Department was notified and brought to the scene.

“NOPD arrived and did basically the same thing that we had already done,” LeBlanc said. “Their protocol, which was explained to us, is that when they receive a bomb threat, they evacuate and canvas the building. We had pretty much done what they would have done.”

Following NOPD’s arrival, the FBI arrived on campus with a bomb expert, LeBlanc said. The three agencies went into the building together to search for the possible bomb.

“Each floor, each room, each closet had to be secured and cleared,” LeBlanc said. “We went from floor to floor, door to door, checking what was in the building. Those items we found that we thought needed to be checked out further, we sent units into the building, and they were able to clear them.”

Once the building had been secured, TUPD, NOPD and the FBI felt comfortable allowing students back into the building to pick up the belongings they had left behind. A small contingent of TUPD officers stayed behind in case students saw anything suspicious.

There is currently an investigation being held to determine the source of the threat.