ERROR: Macro sectionTag is missing! Bomb scare closes Sequim Post Office; suspicious package found to hold only garbage -- Port Angeles Port Townsend Sequim Forks Jefferson County Clallam County Olympic Peninsula Daily NEWS
Bomb scare closes Sequim Post Office; suspicious package found to hold only garbage

By Arwyn Rice
Peninsula Daily News

SEQUIM — A bomb scare closed off the Sequim Post Office for nearly five hours Sunday, but was deemed a hoax by police after a suspicious package turned out to be only a box of trash.

A call reporting a suspicious package in the lobby of the post office at 240 S. Sunnyside Ave. was received by the PenCom police dispatch center at 10:42 a.m.

According to a report from the Sequim Police Department, officers located a package on top of a public mail processing counter inside the lobby.

The 10-inch-by-12-inch cardboard box was duct-taped shut, and a small amount of gray powder was visible around the base of the package, said Sgt. Dave Campbell.

Police cordoned off the building, called for the State Patrol Explosives Unit and contacted the Federal Bureau of Investigation and U.S. Postal Inspectors to assist with the investigation since it is a federal facility.

The State Patrol bomb squad personnel arrived at about 2 p.m. to evaluate the package.

Bomb squad team members took an X-ray of the box, which showed possible bomb materials inside, but an analysis of the box and powder indicated there were no explosives or biological agents, said Sequim Deputy Chief Sheri Crain.

Once the box was opened, it was found to be full of ashes, charred wood, a water bottle and other trash, Crain said.

The box was removed, and the post office was reopened to the public at about 3:10 p.m., she said.

“It looks to me like it was not intentional,” Crain said, but noted that it was unclear if the box was simply a forgotten box of trash or was intended as a bomb hoax.

An investigation will be handled by the Postal Inspector's Office and the Sequim Police.

Anyone with information on the incident is asked to call Detective Sgt. Sean Madison of the Sequim Police Department at 360-683-7227.

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Reporter Arwyn Rice can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5070, or at arwyn.rice@peninsuladailynews.com.

Last modified: July 07. 2014 2:34PM
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