WASHINGTON — Doug Emhoff, the husband of Vice President Kamala Harris, was whisked out of an event Tuesday at Dunbar High School by Secret Service agents following a security threat. DCPS spokesperson Enrique Gutiérrez confirmed it was a bomb threat.
“We had a threat today to the facility so we did, basically we took the precaution of evacuating everybody," Gutiérrez said. "I think everyone is safe. The building is clear. But I don’t have any specific details at this moment.”
Emhoff was at Dunbar High School for an event in commemoration of Black History Month. He was in the school's museum for about five minutes before a member of his security detail approached him saying, “we have to go.” Emhoff was removed from the building around 2:18 p.m. into his waiting motorcade.
Students and educators at the school were instructed to leave the school, with an overhead announcement saying, “evacuate the building.” Students, who were in the fourth period, were dismissed for the day, since it was expected to take several hours for security officials to sweep the building, principal Nadine Smith said.
“Our protocol is to clear the building and move the kids away," Smith said. "DCPS just gave us directions to make sure, to go ahead and send the kids home. We won’t be able to clear the building for probably another hour or two.”
Gutierrez said it is not known whether the threat was related to Emhoff's visit or the Black History Month event.
Emhoff spokesperson Katie Peters said the school alerted the Secret Service about what she termed a “security incident or a report of a potential security incident.”
The Secret Service did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Dunbar is America’s first public high school for Black students. The bomb threat comes after a host of threats against HBCUs only days ago, however MPD Executive Assistant Chief of Police Ashan Benedict said the preliminary investigation has not found anything to link the threat at Dunbar to previous threats surrounding HBCUs.
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