Governor JB Pritzker said that authorities are working to combat and prosecute the “abhorrent” bomb threats that have been targeting libraries throughout Illinois.
Pritzker released a statement Friday saying he condemns the threats made this week towards libraries.
“The threat of violence is disgusting, particularly because it is against institutions that are vitally important to preserving an educated and empowered community,” Pritzker said.
“Libraries represent some of the best of what public services can offer, reaching patrons of all backgrounds and ages and serving a critical role in the battle against rampant misinformation and anti-intellectualism,” the governor said.
A bomb threat prompted the evacuation of a library in Libertyville around 5 p.m. Tuesday on the same day numerous other libraries in the Chicagoland area received bomb threats.
Libertyville Deputy Police Chief Chad Roszkowiak said the facility was evacuated before police and fire crews arrived.
The bomb threat was determined to be not credible and the library returned to normal operations, Roszkowiak said.
The threat was one of many made to libraries throughout the Chicagoland area Tuesday.
In Chicago, an employee received an anonymous email saying there was a bomb inside the Harold Washington Library around 5:30 p.m.
Three public libraries in Aurora were evacuated around the same time for bomb threats.
Threats were also made to libraries in Evanston, Schaumburg, Addison and other suburbs. All of the threats were unfounded.
The Crystal Lake Public Library reopened Friday after it was evacuated and closed due to a bomb threat that was made toward the building Thursday.
All patrons and staff were evacuated from the library due to the threat, the library said.
Officials said police quickly responded and began searching the building but were unable to locate anything.
“Here in Illinois, we stand with our library employees and their patrons. We do not bend to cowardly, anonymous threats of violence,” Pritzker said.
“We will continue to work diligently to combat and prosecute these acts of intimidation and intolerance and to make sure all Illinoisans can visit their local library safely,” he added.
The FBI Chicago told Lake and McHenry County Scanner in August they could not confirm or deny whether they are involved in the investigations but said they take threats to the public “very seriously” and often work closely with local law enforcement.