Bomb Threat Interrupts Bloomsburg University Graduation

BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- Confusion and chaos, that's what students and their families say it was like as they snapped photos outside graduation at Bloomsburg University.

Investigators say a bomb threat interrupted the ceremony.

Police took the president of the university off the stage.

"And when President Hanna came back, someone else was speaking, introducing the speaker and he said, 'I'm really sorry to interrupt but town police have informed me that there's been a bomb threat and we are going to need to evacuate the building," said Ashley Gillan.

"My initial reaction was honestly just fear. I was just paralyzed. I just kind of sat in the chair and stared out," said Theodora Baranowski.

"I actually started tearing up because I was like, I don't know what's happening. I just want to walk across the stage," said Rosemary Ritsick of Pittston.

Family members attending the graduation tell Newswatch 16 after they were evacuated they were redirected to Carver Hall where the ceremony continued.

Campus officials say the threat was called into the Columbia County 911 center but a sweep of the building didn't turn up anything dangerous.

Graduates say they are thankful no one was hurt in the evacuation but are angry their big day was tarnished by the threat.

"I was worried about my family, I was worried about my safety, I was worried about people getting trampled. It was a really sour way to start the day but hopefully, it's looking up," said Baranowski.

"Definitely makes the day memorable but I mean this wasn't the kind of memorable that we're looking for, but I mean, we made the best of it," said Brianna Davis of New York.

University and Bloomsburg police are investigating.

Right now, it's not clear if this threat is related to the string of bogus email bomb threats that took place earlier this week around the country but investigators say that is something they are looking into.


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