FBI terrorism unit investigating HBCU bomb threats as 'hate crimes,' no explosives found

"These threats are being investigated as Racially or Ethnically Motivated Violent Extremism and hate crimes," the agency stated.

Updated: February 2, 2022 - 4:27pm

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The FBI is investigating bomb threats at more than a dozen Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) as 'hate crimes,' and no explosive devices have been discovered.

The investigation is being led by the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Forces, and is "of the highest priority for the Bureau and involves more than 20 FBI field offices across the country," the FBI told Just the News in a statement. 

HBCUs across the country went into lockdown Tuesday, the first day of Black History Month, after receiving anonymous bomb threats. 

"These threats are being investigated as Racially or Ethnically Motivated Violent Extremism and hate crimes," the agency stated.

Six juveniles nationwide have been identified as suspects in the investigation, one official told NBC News Wednesday. The law enforcement source said the suspects, who seem to have been racially motivated, are "tech savvy" and used sophisticated tools to disguise themselves.

The FBI said it takes "all threats with the utmost seriousness" and is "committed to thoroughly and aggressively investigating these threats."

The federal agency is working with "local, state, and federal law enforcement partners, coordinating with the targeted institutions, and meeting with academia and faith leaders to share information" about the threats. The FBI could not share more information because the investigation is ongoing.