Fake bomb, threats shut down 1 of Louisiana's largest universities

Bill Fuller And Janet McConnaughey / The Associated Press
July 16, 2014 09:14 AM

Brooks David, public information officer for the Louisiana State Police, addresses questions regarding a suspicious package found in a park near the campus of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette in Lafayette, La., Wednesday, July 16, 2014. Bomb technicians were working Wednesday to neutralize the suspicious device while authorities investigated a second suspicious package in a nearby parking garage. (AP Photo/The Daily Advertiser, Paul Kieu)

NEW ORLEANS - The bomb threat that shut down one of Louisiana's largest universities for a day was a hoax, Louisiana State Police said Wednesday, after disposing of a suspicious device and evacuating the campus.

Although teams were continuing to search the University of Louisiana at Lafayette campus, investigators found no explosives in a device found after a man called in threats to a television station, Master Trooper Brooks David said.

"It was a hoax device," he said.

David said university or campus police thought they might have found a second device in a nearby campus parking garage, but it turned out to be nothing suspicious.

Letitia Walker, news director at KATC-TV, said the station's morning producer received a phone call at around 5:30 a.m. that a bomb had been placed in a trash can in a park and that a second device had been placed on the university campus. Walker said the station immediately notified police.

A university tweet told staff and students to stay away. The university about 125 miles (200 kilometres) west of New Orleans has nearly 18,000 students.

The university reopened its dormitories and apartments Wednesday afternoon. Classes will resume Thursday.

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