Eastern Kentucky University's campus was quiet and officials reported no violence Wednesday despite a written threat found last week in a men's bathroom.
The Eastern Progress, the campus newspaper, posted photos on Twitter showing empty classrooms and a nearly empty food court Wednesday morning. Model Laboratory School, a public elementary, middle and high school affiliated with EKU, was closed.
EKU spokesman Scott Cason acknowledged that "there are a lot of empty classrooms on various parts of campus today."
He said students were "using today to catch up or get ahead on their studies."
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"I know of at least one class that is meeting at Hardee's restaurant today," Cason said.
Classes also met at Apollo Pizza and other near-campus locations, but some chose to meet in their normal settings.
"I walked through Combs Building and I saw a group of students meeting on the first floor in one of the classrooms," Cason said. "There's not the flow of students you usually see, but there are people out and about."
EKU President Michael Benson issued a campus email last week saying students, faculty and staff could stay away from campus without penalty.
A heightened law-enforcement presence came from Kentucky State Police, Richmond and Berea police and the Madison County sheriff's office in addition to EKU police, Cason said.
An increased police presence was also planned for Wednesday night for Alton Brown's performance at the EKU Center for the Arts and at EKU's basketball game against Morehead State University.
Meanwhile, there are no solid leads on who wrote the message found in the bathroom, Cason said.
The threat came in the form of graffiti posted in a stall in Combs Hall that said, "Bringing gun to here. 2-11-15. Dead students." The graffiti was found Feb. 3.
One positive to come out of the episode is that 600 people over the past two days signed up for the university's emergency messaging system, Cason said. Those who register cellphones or other personal communications devices with the system receive emergency texts, emails and pre-recorded phone messages.
That brings total registration in the system to 4,000, or about a fifth of the total campus community, Cason said. "This has become an opportunity to raise community awareness about personal safety and the need to stay in contact in the event of an emergency," Cason said.
Officials also created an anonymous online tip form to identify the graffiti's author at Police.eku.edu/eku-tip-reporting. EKU police may be contacted at (859) 622-1111.