CNN New York Offices Evacuated After Bomb Threat
On late Thursday night, the CNN New York offices were evacuated after receiving a bomb threat. Later the police searched the premises and gave an all clear as no actual explosives were found.
This comes after October, when in a similar episode the news network’s offices were evacuated after an explosive device was discovered at the New York headquarters. CNN was targeted amid a wave of pipe bombs sent to opponents of President Donald Trump.
According to witnesses, the fire alarms rang inside the newsroom to signal an evacuation around 10:30am. During this period the network resorted to pre-taped programming. An hour later the network was broadcasting from Skype.
“People just tuning in wondering why you’re seeing me on Skype, why there’s such technical difficulties, it’s because we have been taken off the air because a bomb threat was called in to CNN,” said host Don Lemon. “We were evacuated and we know as much as you do.”
“Due to a police investigation at Columbus Circle, West 58th Street between 8th and 9th Avenue is closed to vehicle and pedestrian traffic,” the New York Police Department tweeted, referring to the address of the news organization’s offices. “Please avoid this area. Update to follow.”
Around midnight, CNN said police had given the all clear for people to go back into the building.
A Florida man named Cesar Sayoc was arrested for allegedly sending them and was indicted on 30 federal counts. He faces up to life in prison if convicted.
This is not a one off incident; the rising political polarization in America has been a war that is being fought at the forefront of the media. This political polarization is evident in the way news channels have “picked sides” between the democrats or the republicans. And this is only fueled by the attitude of the American President, who calls out specific news agencies, calling them ‘fake news’ and ‘anti American’. As sad as it may be, it is not surprising at all that the words of the President influence people to take such actions which target the free media and especially those media houses that criticize the current administration.