Updated, 10:10 a.m., 1/7/21

The Michigan Capitol Building reopened at 9 a.m. Thursday after a threat was made.

The Michigan State Police (MSP) said that a call at 6:40 a.m. came into the Michigan State Capitol Facilities Control Office in Lansing, in which a male caller made a bomb threat. Notifications were immediately made to staff who work in the building to ensure their safety, MSP said.

“Out of an abundance of caution, the Michigan State Police (MSP) sent additional resources to the Capitol to assess the validity of the threat. While the building was being checked and secured, it was temporarily closed to staff. By 9 a.m., the MSP determined the building was safe, and staff were allowed to return. This threat remains under investigation, and additional information will not be released. Every effort will be made to identify the person who made this threat and prosecute them to the fullest extent the law will allow,” the MSP said in a statement.

State Sen. Curtis Hertel (D-East Lansing) and state Sen. Mallory McMorrow (D-Royal Oak) were among those who tweeted about the alert they received. 

“Now the Michigan Capitol Building is closed because of a threat,” Hertel tweeted. 

The Legislature is not currently in session, although staff still typically is in the building.

“This morning, Michigan,” McMorrow tweeted. “Without consequences, this will keep happening. This is why it’s so egregious that so many involved in yesterday’s events were simply escorted out of the U.S. Capitol and sent home. It comes one day pro-Trump mob carried out an insurrection effort at the U.S. Capitol in an effort to overturn the presidential election that Donald Trump lost to Joe Biden.” 

It comes a one day after pro-Trump supporters carried out an insurrection Wednesday at the U.S. Capitol as the U.S. House and U.S. Senate were meeting to certify Electoral College results. A small protest was carried out on the grounds of the Michigan Capitol building Wednesday.

The Michigan Capitol was last shut down for a threat in December when the Electoral College met to certify Biden’s victory in Michigan. Earlier last year, right-wing extremists allegedly plotted to blow up the Capitol and kidnap and kill Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.

At Wednesday’s Michigan pro-Trump rally, Phil Robinson, leader of the Michigan Liberty Militia, said that the men accused in the plot to are “not guilty.”

“All I can say about that is that they are not guilty. I know them guys personally and that’s not the case,” he said. “It will all get played out in court and we’ll all find out the truth.”

Ken Coleman
Ken Coleman covers Southeast Michigan, economic justice and civil rights. He is a former Michigan Chronicle senior editor and served as the American Black Journal segment host on Detroit Public Television. He has written and published four books on black life in Detroit, including Soul on Air: Blacks Who Helped to Define Radio in Detroit and Forever Young: A Coleman Reader. His work has been cited by the Detroit News, Detroit Free Press, History Channel and CNN. Additionally, he was an essayist for the award-winning book, Detroit 1967: Origins, Impacts, Legacies. Ken has served as a spokesperson for the Michigan Democratic Party, Detroit Public Schools, U.S. Sen. Gary Peters and U.S. Rep. Brenda Lawrence. Previously to joining the Advance, he worked for the Detroit Federation of Teachers as a communications specialist. He is a Historical Society of Michigan trustee and a Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metropolitan Detroit advisory board member.