‘Suspicious package’ prompts response
Parcel outside Planned Parenthood deemed safe
A “suspicious package” that closed Delaware Avenue for three hours and prompted the evacuation of nearby buildings on Monday was determined to be safe, police said.
An employee of the Planned Parenthood, located at the corner of Delaware Avenue and Haines Street, discovered the package on the front porch at 9:12 a.m. and called police, according to Sgt. Gerald Bryda, a spokesman for the Newark Police Department.
“It was beat up and had tape around it with no label,” Bryda said. “That was taken as suspicious.”
Newark Police responded to the scene and decided to call in the Delaware State Police Explosive Ordinance Disposal team to investigate the package.
Parts of Delaware Avenue and Haines Street were shut down, and officers evacuated buildings within a few hundred feet of the Planned Parenthood. Several University of Delaware students who could not return to their apartments milled around the perimeter of the scene, and one said a police officer came into her apartment to ask her to leave.
A state police bomb robot and officers in protective suits examined the package and ultimately determined it contained a file of papers intended for a Planned Parenthood employee. The package actually was addressed to the employee, but the label was not immediately visible because of the way the package was positioned on the porch, Bryda said.
The evacuation was lifted just after noon. An employee could be seen carrying the package inside.
The bomb squad was called in out of an abundance of caution, Bryda said. The fact that the national Planned Parenthood organization has been the target of violence in the past played a factor in the decision, he added.
A bomb squad robot moves in to investigate a suspicious package left outside the Planned Parenthood on Delaware Avenue.