Midterm exams at Northern Illinois University are disrupted twice this week by possible attacks on campus, but police may be moving in on one of the suspects.
University Police had to evacuate nearly 400 students on Wednesday from Cole and Dusable Halls after someone claimed they had planted a bomb in each building. University Police say that the call came in around 6 p.m. to the DeKalb 9-1-1 Center. After 12 hours of searching the buildings police did not find anything and believe the call was a hoax. Police may be zeroing in on the caller.
The university says that the call originated at a 7-11 just down the street from campus. Police are said to be reviewing audiotapes from the 9-1-1 calls, plus video surveillance from the convenient store. A camera is located just above the phone where this bomb threats were apparently called in.
Midterms have been taking place all week, but would get disrupted again, this time by someone who called in an anthrax attack to the university paper. A university spokesman says that the caller said that he had left vials of anthrax in Cole and Dusable halls, but police this time did not evacuate these buildings after feeling that the threat was not credible.
Over the past ten years NIU has received a number a threats against the university. NIU Spokesman Melanie Magara says, “A majority of these threats coincide with midterm exams.”
Melanie says she is not surprised by the timing of these threats but believe the callers will be caught.
Now in both of these threats caller is believed to be male. No word from police if they believe they are related. NIU says that the people who made these threats may think they are only pulling a prank. If they are caught though these pranks they say could lead to more than five years in prison.