A bomb threat to multiple locations caused the evacuation of a Layton, Utah, Target store Friday afternoon, local media reported.
Salt Lake City’s KUTV 2 reported that police officers evacuated the store around 1 p.m. on Friday after bomb threats were made to multiple locations in the state.
According to the report, staff and customers were moved to the parking lot of the retail store.
Layton Police Sgt. John Ottesen said that stores inSalt Lake, Taylorsville, and Provo also received bomb threats. Police began the investigation after two local news stations received emails alerting them about the threats.
Ottesen said that the store’s Pride merchandise displays were referenced in the emails, which consisted of three sentences each, and came from a “bogus email.”
Salt Lake City Police said in a statement to KUTV 2 that they were increasing patrols around Target stores in the wake of the threats.
“Officers have worked with the Target Corporation throughout the morning and have determined there is no credible threat to the Target stores in Salt Lake City,” the statement said.
“Officers will continue neighborhood patrols around the Target locations in Salt Lake City out of an abundance of caution. We encourage anyone who sees anything suspicious to immediately call 911.”
The retail giant lost $9 billion market value in the last week after Pride Month displays promoted children’s clothing that was LGBTQ-friendly, causing a call for a boycott of the company, the New York Post reported Thursday.
Before the controversy started, Target was trading last week at almost $161 per share, which dropped to $141.76 on Thursday.
The company told the Post Tuesday that it was removing some of the items and “making other changes” after a backlash erupted by customers reacting to the displays, including some tipping the displays over and confronting store staff.
“Since introducing this year’s collection, we’ve experienced threats impacting our team members’ sense of safety and well-being while at work,” Target said in a statement to the Post on Tuesday. “Given these volatile circumstances, we are making adjustments to our plans, including removing items that have been at the center of the most significant confrontational behavior.”
While Target did not specifically say which items were being removed or changed, those getting the most attention included the “tuck friendly” women’s swimsuits that allow trans women to conceal their genitals without having gender surgery, the report said.
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