Shoes in shoe box are cause of Freeland bomb scare Wednesday

A “suspicious box” that led to the closure of a section of Main Street and nearby businesses in Freeland Wednesday morning turned out to be a shoe box with work boots in it, according to Island County Sheriff Mark Brown.

A deputy responded to the scene of the box around 6:45 a.m. and called for assistance to determine what its contents were. Because it was “suspiciously put in a bus shelter in proximity to several fuel pumps in a business area,” it prompted concern Brown said.

Law enforcement closed roads between East Harbor Road and Main Street and Lotto Avenue and Main Street until just after 9 a.m. that morning. Eric Brooks, director of Island County Department of Emergency Management, sent a phone system alert to nearby businesses advising them to evacuate to the area, Brown said.

“We decided to be on the safe side,” Brown said.

Deputies called Washington State Patrol Bomb Squad, which dispatches out of Marysville, but the state agency was called off while still en route to Whidbey Island, Brown said.

The contents of the box couldn’t easily be seen from observation, but while speaking to individuals who might have seen the box placed, deputies found an Island Transit driver who saw the box and its contents the night before.

The bomb squad was called off and roads reopened after it was confirmed there were shoes inside the box and nothing harmful.

“We apologize for any inconvenience to the public and to the business owners,” Brown said.

“But we opted on the side of overall public safety and determining if there was a threat to public safety, as opposed to making a more rapid decision.”

More in News

One person airlifted after crash in Freeland

A motorcycle and car collision Tuesday afternoon resulted in injuries at Highway… Continue reading

Whidbey emergency response team takes flight

Island County is getting its own air force, of sorts. Now in… Continue reading

Dead rabbit revenge | Island Scanner

The following reports were gathered from calls made to the Island County… Continue reading

Suicide prevention month: Groups work to address ‘public health emergency’

Local groups are working to show that deaths by suicide are preventable.… Continue reading

Piper Travis
County settles for $3.1M in woman’s jail-related death

Jail staff neglected a Whidbey Island woman as she became seriously ill, her family alleged.

Island County plan aspires to end homelessness

Local leaders and residents have been discussing the issue of homelessness for… Continue reading

Nutcracker auditions set for September 22

There will be open community auditions on Sunday, Sept. 22, for the… Continue reading

Burn ban lifted by Island County Sheriff’s Office

Due to the increase in “fuel moisture levels,” the Island County Sheriff’s… Continue reading

Port seeks solutions to dogs roaming Greenbank Farm

To address ongoing issues with dogs straying into farmland at the Greenbank… Continue reading

Most Read