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A 'joke' takes police to Angell Hall


Published February 14, 2013

No suspicious items were found in both cases, but administrators acted quickly to warn students via text, e-mail, and website postings. No such warning or communication was issued immediately at the University of Michigan on Thursday, though UMPD's website was updated with information periodically.

UMPD alerts the University community through the Emergency Alert System when it feels a situation poses a campus-wide threat.

Brown said the system was not activated in response to Thursday's event because reports of DeFluri were limited to one building.

“The Emergency Alert System is to used when there is a confirmed, imminent threat that the majority of people need to take cover,” Brown said. “Our campus is different for one single building. It was one building, so officers were doing their best to deal with that one building.”

Universities and colleges across the country have also faced false alarm situations from internal miscommunication. Last year, Tulane University erroneously sent an emergency text message to students warning of a shooter at an unspecified location. Officials later retracted the message and wrote that it was accidentally released during a training session for the emergency response system.

In 2011, U.S. Capitol Police in Washington, D.C. responded to reports that a gunman had been spotted near the Georgetown University Law Center. Officers later found a gun nearby, but determined it was unrelated to the incident and Georgetown released an “all-clear” message to its campus community within a few hours.

—Editor in Chief Andrew Weiner, Managing News Editor Adam Rubenfire; Daily News Editor Peter Shahin; and Daily Staff Reporters Giacomo Bolgona, Matt Jackonen and Stephanie Shenouda contributed reporting.