A hoax bomb threat drew a large police presence to the University Mall in Tuscaloosa Friday morning but there reportedly never was a genuine threat to the public.

Stephanie Taylor, a spokesperson for the Tuscaloosa Police Department, said officers responded to the mall at 10:30 a.m. after staff received a threatening email that said there was a bomb in the building.

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Taylor said the mall remained open while around two dozen Tuscaloosa and University of Alabama Police Officers searched the premises.

An all-clear was declared around 11 a.m.

"Officers and K9s checked all interior and exterior areas of the property before deeming it safe," Taylor said. "Investigators suspect that the same individual or group responsible for recent threats to government buildings, residences, businesses, and places of worship across the country and state is likely behind this hoax as well. TPD investigators have been in contact with federal authorities who are actively investigating these false threats."

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