Holyoke Center Bomb Threat Deemed a 'Hoax'

UPDATED: March 29, 2013, at 5:57 a.m.

The Cambridge Police Department received a false report of bombs at the Holyoke Center early Thursday morning, authorities said.

After the report came in at about 4:50 a.m., police descended on the Holyoke Center and conducted a search that turned up nothing, leading authorities to conclude that the building was safe, the Harvard University Police Department wrote in a community advisory sent out at 7:35 a.m. University spokesperson Kevin Galvin said at 8:30 a.m. that “all indications are that this was a hoax,” and that HUPD sent the advisory “to err on the side of heightened vigilance on campus.”

CPD spokesperson Daniel M. Riviello wrote in an email that the officers spoke with the building’s 24-hour security staff and conducted a “sweep and assessment” of the area.

“Officers observed nothing out of the ordinary and the scene was cleared once it was established that there was no threat to public safety,” Riviello wrote, adding that the investigation is ongoing.

A University official told The Crimson that at the early hour the threat was made, there are typically security guards, cleaning crews, and a small group of urgent care personnel at Harvard University Health Services, which is located at the south end of the Holyoke Center. The building is located at 1350 Mass. Ave.

The advisory email encouraged community members to call HUPD at 617-495-1212 to report anything “that seems out of place or out of the ordinary” on Thursday.

“Incidents such as these are a reminder that public safety is at its highest when we all remain vigilant,” the email said.

—Nikita Kansra contributed to the reporting of this article.

—Staff writer Samuel Y. Weinstock can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @syweinstock.


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