Update: ATF confirms no explosives in suspicious package
VICTORIA, Texas — Update 5:00 p.m. 3/ 8/19:
A spokesperson for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives confirms no explosives were found inside the suspicious package that shutdown DeLeon Plaza, and caused parts of the County Courthouse to be evacuated Wednesday morning.
ATF Agent Nicole Strong said after the x-ray od the package revealed wires and batteries, it was secured and taken to an undisclosed location for further investigation.
It was determined there were no active explosives in the package.
Newscenter 25 reached out to the Victoria County Sheriff’s Office for an update on the suspect, but have not yet received a respone.
Update 4:43 p.m. 3/7/19:
The Victoria Police Department have confirmed via e-mail that one of their mental health officers took a 29 year old white male out of Port Lavaca into custody and transported him to a secure location to be mentally evaluated.
It is unclear where the suspect was transported to and which law enforcement agency is handling the mental health evaluation.
VPD confirmed they are not leading the investigation into the bomb threat and state the County Sheriff’s Office is currently working on the case.
We have reached out to the Victoria County Sheriff’s Office for an update on the investigation but have not received a response at this time.
We will update this story when more information becomes available.
Update 6:08 p.m. 3/6/19
The all-clear has officially been given after a portion of the Victoria County Courthouse was evactuated due to a bomb threat.
The courthouse was partially evacuated Wednesday morning due to a bomb threat. The Victoria Police Department received a call alerting them about a suspect with explosives. They stopped the suspect in front of the courthouse carrying a backpack.
“We did find the backpack that has the suspicious package, we’ve secured it and corded off the area to a safe distance taken all the precautions per the guidelines by the ATF,” said VCSO Chief Deputy Roy Boyd.
However, Chief Deputy Boyd stated that people were still inside the courthouse during the threat. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosive Unit advised him that the location of the bomb didn’t require the whole building to be evacuated.
ATF arrived and here’s what they did:
“What the bomb squad did they came with their equipment and x-rayed the backpack that was there on the ground,” Chief Deputy Boyd said. “That backpack contained numerous material including wiring, and it was some batteries, but they weren’t able to make any determinations. So, what they did was loaded it up into an explosive proof container, they removed it to a safe location were they can examine it and destroy it,” Chief Deputy Boyd said.
Right now the suspect is in custody with the County Sheriff’s Office where he will undergo a mental evaluation.
Original Story 10:42 a.m. 3/6/19
Wednesday morning the Victoria Police Department and Victoria County Sheriffs Office received a call about someone who was supposedly carrying a bomb and was planning to take it to the Victoria County Courthouse.
Law Enforcement was able to stop the person at the front of the courthouse and take him into custody, according to VCSO’s Chief Deputy Roy Boyd. VCSO has not yet released the name of the suspect.
Officers set up police tape to set up a safe perimeter because they found a suspicious package inside the suspect’s backpack. Following ATF’s guidlines, VCSO secured the package and are waiting for a bomb squad to respond out of Corups Christi.
Parts of the courthouse have been evactuated as percautionary measures, but Chief Deputy Boyd said because of the location of the package, on the steps of the courthouse, it didn’t all need to be evactuated.
This is a developing situation, please check back for updates.
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