Five State Capitols Evacuated Following Bomb Threats
Bomb threats forced the evacuation of five state capitols Wednesday, though law enforcement officials have said they didn’t find any explosives.
State and law enforcement officials in Kentucky, Michigan, Mississippi, Georgia and Montana all confirmed that threats were received at their respective capitols this week.
Today a bomb threat was made against our Mississippi Capitol building. Thankfully, the situation is clear.
I’m incredibly thankful to the Capitol Police and all the Mississippi law enforcement officers who immediately responded to the incident.
— Governor Tate Reeves (@tatereeves) January 3, 2024
In a statement, the Federal Bureau of Investigation said it didn’t have “information to indicate a specific and credible threat” at any capitol, but that they’d coordinate with other agencies so tangible threats could be monitored.
“[W]hile everyone is safe, KSP has asked everyone to evacuate the state Capitol and is investigating a threat received by the Secretary of State’s Office,” Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear (D) posted on the social media site X. “We are aware of similar threats made to other offices across the country.”
Kentucky received a “mass email” that warned that multiple explosives would detonate in a few hours.
Over the last few days, similar swatting reports were made at other public buildings and even some public officials’ homes. That forced the evacuation of statehouse buildings or offices in other states, including Minnesota, Maine, Hawaii and Connecticut.
The FBI has classified all of these threats as just hoaxes but again said it always takes any call of this nature seriously.
In most of the states that received the threats, the closures ended up being short, with disruptions to operations being described as minimal.
For instance, the capitol building in Montana was able to re-open in about two hours, the Associated Press reported. That came after law enforcement officials completed a building sweep, during which they didn’t find any evidence that a threat was credible.
Other states also received a threat but didn’t end up closing their buildings. That list included Maryland, Missouri, New Hampshire, Nebraska, Oklahoma and Wyoming, according to the AP.
These threats follow numerous swatting calls reported at the homes of politicians.
Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) was the target of a swatting call at her home on Christmas Day, while Shenna Bellows, the secretary of state in Maine, was the target of a swatting call one day after she decided to remove Donald Trump from the presidential primary ballot in her state.