Bomb squad called after suspicious packages left in Sarasota post office

Posted at 11:35 PM, Oct 13, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-15 01:35:32-04

SARASOTA, Fla. -- The bomb squad was called in after suspicious packages caused a big scare in a Sarasota post office.

Sarasota police say a citizen walked into the post office around 2:30 p.m. on Saturday afternoon and noticed multiple suspicious looking packages left in the lobby.

"Our trained personnel have looked at the packages and they feel that they’re suspicious enough that they need to follow through," said Lt. Bruce King of the Sarasota Police Department.

Ringling Blvd. in front of the post office was closed off all afternoon as Sarasota police, the FBI, and the postal inspector brought in the bomb squad. Police wouldn’t go into details about what made the packages so suspicious, but people who live nearby were concerned by all the activity.

"I think we’re all kind of aware now about anything weird being left like backpacks, packages, and bags. I think now we’re all kind of on alert to look, as opposed to maybe 15 years ago when we were like oh, there’s a box, there’s a package, and it was nothing," said Alice Nelson who lives in Sarasota near the post office.

After hours of investigating the U.S. Postal Inspector cleared the items as mailable and non-hazardous.

"We have to assume that everything is suspicious until we can prove otherwise. Our primary concern is to protect the workers and citizens and everyone in the area so in doing that we have to take the proper protocol," said King.