BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — Increased security measures are in place on the UAB Campus New Year’s Eve 2014 in light of a violent threat involving a school gym.
UAB Police are stepping up patrols and campus administrators are taking a look at how they handle unconfirmed, verbal threats, according to a University spokesperson. This after an anonymous phone call led to a large scale tactical police response on campus.
It all started mid-morning on Wednesday when UAB Police got an unconfirmed threat of potential gun violence at a gym on campus. Birmingham police responded to help and closed off sections of 13th Street South near Bartow Arena. Officers swept every gym on campus. Ultimately no gunman or weapon was found.
Students received a text alert around noon informing them of the unconfirmed threat and the increased security. All the gyms on campus closed early.
“I like how I came on campus and I didn’t know anything about the B alert system and everything so I was happy that they pretty much could send messages out and like with quick notice,” said Trey Hogan, UAB Freshman. “It’s something I’ve had to like come into and you know it’s like we’re not we have to except the fact that we’re not completely safe so you just have to keep dealing with it and move on.”
UAB Student Larry Lumbard says ever since the mass shooting at Virginia Tech security has been a very real concern, but threat at one of their gyms seems surreal.
“Some people were in the gym I was actually on my way so I just you know turned around and went the opposite direction and just kind of waited it out till I heard everything was clear,” said Lumbard.
“It is home for me. I’m here every day so it’s a very scary situation you know, but I do feel like UAB Police and Birmingham Police do a great job trying to keep us safe, but it’s very scary and I’m just happy no one got hurt,” he continued.
“It’s just crazy,” said Terry Hogan, UAB Senior.
At press time there was still no word on who called in the threat.
UAB will be reviewing its procedures for unconfirmed verbal threats including campus communications and anyone who sees a suspicious person on campus is asked to call UAB Police at (205) 934-3535, according to UAB Media Relations.
Related: Photos of police on the scene
Copyright 2014 WIAT 42 News