St. Xavier, which has campuses on Chicago's South Side and in Orland Park, called in Chicago police and the FBI after school officials found a threat scrawled on a bathroom wall at Regina Hall, a freshman co-ed dorm located on the main campus at 3700 West 103rd St. in Chicago.On one hand, nobody wants a repeat of Northern Illinois or Virginia Tech. On the other hand, any miscreant with a marking pen can get a few extra study days, possibly with the side effect of making other students nervous.
Menacing graffiti was first found on April 5. But a second message found Thursday in the same bathroom stall was of more concern to school officials because of its specific threat: "Be prepared to die on 4/14."
"We stepped in immediately, given the post- Virginia Tech climate. We can't take even the most seemingly harmless threats anything less than seriously," said Joe Moore, the university's spokesman.
"We have been pursuing a very, very aggressive investigation to try to narrow down who might have perpetrated this," Moore said. "Ultimately we had to weigh the risk of the students with the likelihood of something occurring and had to choose to close the school."This week marks the first anniversary of Virginia Tech's Cruel April. With final exams approaching, I fear we have not seen the last of these threats.
Moore said the chief of St. Xavier's campus police made the recommendation to close after consulting with several law enforcement agencies.