Suspicious Package At Pasadena U-Haul Lot Prompts Evacuations

PASADENA (CNS) - Investigators from the Pasadena police and fire departments today looked into the discovery of a suspicious package at a U-Haul facility, prompting evacuations and the closure of a freeway and other roads.

“The device was about six-to-eight inches in length,” interim Pasadena Police Chief John Perez said. “It did look like a device to the bomb squad. There was some wiring, there was some taping, enough for them to decide that in fact it looked like a real device. It was an open device, just contained with the mechanics of what a device would look like and it was attached to the back of a vehicle.”

The item was reported about 5:50 p.m. Monday at the U-Haul lot in the 500 block of South Raymond Avenue, just north of California Boulevard, said Lisa Derderian of the Pasadena Police Department. The area within a half-mile radius was evacuated as a precaution, she said. A bomb squad rendered the item safe about 9 p.m.

Vehicle and pedestrian traffic was blocked on Del Mar Boulevard to the north, California Boulevard to the south, Pasadena Avenue to the west and Marengo Avenue to the east, Derderian said.

The nearby offices of radio station KPCC and the LAist website in the 400 block of South Raymond Avenue were evacuated, both reported on Twitter.

In addition to Pasadena Police and Fire Department personnel and a sheriff's bomb squad, agents from the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives were also on hand, Derderian said.

The investigation prompted the closure of the Pasadena (110) Freeway at Fair Oaks Avenue for about an hour until around 9 p.m., according to the California Highway Patrol.

Metro halted Gold Line trains between the South Pasadena and Memorial Park stations. Buses were used to shuttle passengers between the two stops, Metro reported.

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