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Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

Threat deterred at the Al

Photo by Zach Bukowski
The Al McGuire Center.

Two undergraduate Marquette students were taken into custody following threats to “blow up” the Al McGuire Center during the Friday, Oct. 6 Marquette women’s volleyball game against Creighton. Both students were referred to the Milwaukee County District Attorney’s Office and await charges.

The Marquette Wire is not naming the students at this time, as they have yet to be charged with a crime.

The students arrived at the Al for the game that began at 7 p.m. One of the students went and changed from his street clothing he wore into the Al to a Kaftan, a traditional dress worn in Middle Eastern countries. According to the student’s statement to the Marquette University Police Department, he planned to walk around in the Kaftan with the intention of filming people’s reactions for a YouTube video.

At approximately 7:45 p.m. the two students approached a MU police officer on duty at the game, according to a MUPD report. As one student spoke to MUPD, the other filmed the interaction. After stating that the police officer was “just the man I wanted to see,” the student then asked the officer if he liked his Kaftan.

The report said the student then told the officer he was going to “blow up this place,” while the other student continued to film the interaction. The student told the officer he was only joking.  According to the report, the officer said he told the student that he “could not be saying statements like that.” The two students, after not receiving a reaction from the officer, walked away.

The officer reported he watched both students move around the Al and lost sight of them at one point.

The student continued to approach people stating he was going to “blow up” the building. A Marquette employee that was approached reported the student to the officers stationed at the game. 

The MUPD officers present requested more officers to the Al. The students were detained separately leading to MUPD searching the students and their belongings. According to the report, the search turned up “negative” for concerns associated with the threat. 

MUPD Assistant Chief Jeff Kranz said bomb threats typically come in the form of a phone call or written message from an unknown person. Since MUPD was able to locate the two students right away, they did not feel there was a threat to the public.

“The students were taken into custody right away, so there wasn’t a need to evacuate … The threat didn’t involve a bomb we were unable to locate.”

Kevin Conway, University Spokesperson, said MUPD did not sweep the building following the threats nor did they evacuate the 2,209 people in attendance for the game.

How we covered this story:

On Oct. 9, we were contacted by a community member who was concerned about an incident that occurred on Oct. 6 that was labeled “Terrorist Threats” on MUPD’s Daily Log. From there, we filed an open records request on Oct. 11 and received the police report and supplemental materials on Oct. 16. All information gathered for this story was collected through police reports and interviews with Marquette University Police and University Relations. 

Because this is a concern of public safety, we thought it would be important to share details of this incident with the community and how we reported on it. Given that full details about the incident were not made available to the public, and in the interest of avoiding asking leading interview questions to students, we chose not to interview students at this time. We will continue to cover this story as more information becomes available, and we will continue to seek out community reactions to stories like this one.

This story was written by Hope Moses and Megan Woolard. They can be reached at [email protected] and [email protected].

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About the Contributors
Megan Woolard
Megan Woolard, Managing Editor of the Marquette Tribune
Megan is the Managing Editor of the Marquette Tribune at the Wire. She is a Senior from Portland, OR studying journalism and English literature. In her free time, Megan enjoys collecting CDs. She is a huge fan of the Portland Trailblazers. This year Megan is looking forward to spending time with other staff members and producing important content. 
Hope Moses
Hope Moses, Executive Director

Hope Moses is a senior from Milwaukee, Wisconsin studying journalism and peace studies at the university and the Executive Director of the Marquette Wire for the 2023-2024 school year. Prior to this position, she served as the Editor of Diversity and Inclusion for the organization and the inaugural Foley Fellow for the James W. Foley Legacy Foundation. Outside of the Wire, she enjoys playing tennis, creating art and binge-watching tv shows.

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    Felecia ROct 17, 2023 at 12:18 pm

    Hope and Megan,
    Thanks for sharing this information.
    Any incident like this no matter how small the protocol of a bomb threat handling should have taken place.
    Due to someone’s lack of protocol following this incident could have resulted in harm and up to the loss of lives.