TPD bomb technicians X-ray package at local student lounge
Thursday September 13, 2001
Police taking extra precaution with all cases due to attacks
The Tucson Police Department is investigating all calls and stepping up police patrols due to Tuesday's attacks on the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. and World Trade Center in New York City, police officials said.
"We've had numerous calls of suspicious activity that we wouldn't normally consider suspicious," said TPD spokesperson Sgt. Judy Altieri. "We certainly are advising people - better safe than sorry."
She said TPD has specified certain areas where heightened security may be necessary.
"We have identified places at risk and are taking action," Altieri said. These actions include visible patrol and other actions that Altieri said she could not specify for security reasons.
Police evacuated nearby houses shortly after 6 a.m. yesterday as bomb technicians X-rayed a package left on the doorstep of a local Chabad Lubavitch Center - a Jewish meeting place and area of worship at 1315 N. Mountain Ave. - Altieri said.
A Tucson police officer found the box while patrolling the area and alerted bomb technicians because the packaging around the box had been opened and re-sealed.
The box was found to contain pamphlets when X-rayed, and two residences were evacuated.
It was a "very low-key operation," Altieri said.
One resident who was evacuated did not know where to go after being told to leave her house.
"At 6:30 (a.m.) there was a bang on the door," said resident Shawn Finn. A police officer told Finn there was a suspicious box nearby and that she needed to leave.
"I didn't have anywhere to go," Finn said. "The police were like 'go away,' and I'm wandering around like some homeless person with my cat."
Finn was not allowed to return to her house until after 11 a.m.
Meanwhile, all cars and pedestrians were diverted from the center.