Series of bomb threats targeting LGBTQ+ Pride events in Montana deemed to be hoaxes

The tactics are "frequently used to try to dissuade people from participating."

May 7, 2024, 4:11 AM

A series of bomb threats targeting annual Pride events in Montana were deemed to be hoaxes “used to try to dissuade people from participating” in the LGBTQ+ celebrations, police say.

Two threats were made on Saturday and Sunday when the Bozeman Police Department investigated two bomb threats that “occurred within the city limits of Bozeman,” according to a statement from the Bozeman Police Department. Two other similar bomb threats were received by authorities on Friday.

After police conducted an investigation into the threats along with federal law enforcement partners, they determined that the threats lacked credibility and that authorities were “doing all we can to identify the source,” police said.

“As a city, we remain vigilant and take these threats of violence seriously. The businesses and individuals targeted had connections to our upcoming Pride events and tactics like these have frequently been used to try to dissuade people from participating,” according to the Bozeman Police Department. “As Bozeman looks to host Pride Week again this year, we stand committed to protecting our community, especially those of the LGBTQ+ community, so that everyone feels safe to celebrate.”

It is unclear whether the source of the bomb threats were from the same individual or group but areas of the city were cordoned off and several buildings and surrounding business were evacuated following the initial two threats that came in on Friday, police said.

“Detectives began investigating the leads, ultimately determining that the email originated from an unknown account holder in Nigeria, Africa,” said the Bozeman Police Department. “Detectives also learned from Federal partners that similar emails had been received by other businesses throughout the nation and were believed to be hoaxes. It appears at this time that these threats were related to planned PRIDE events next month.”

“Hate and threats of violence to our residents have no place in Bozeman and are not representative of who we are. As we approach Pride events and beyond, we will ensure that appropriate measures are taken to keep our community safe,” authorities continued. “We remain dedicated to being a welcoming community for all, and as always, we urge anyone who witnesses any suspicious activity to immediately report incidents to the police.”

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