No arrests made on two bomb threats

Police are on scene at the post office following a bomb threat.

Police blocked access to the post office following the bomb threats.

By Thomas Garcia
QCS Senior Writer

Operations at the U.S. Post Office and offices in downtown Tucumcari were brought to a halt following two bomb threats within a week.

No injuries were reported and no arrests had been made through Monday, officials said.

Monday’s threat was resolved quickly as city police, Quay County Sheriff Russell Shafer and postal officials cleared the building and found nothing suspicious, said Pete Rivera, Tucumcari’s deputy police chief.

A similar threat on Sept. 21 shut down the post office most of the day as officials called in New Mexico State Police to ensure there were no explosive devices.

Monday’s threat was resolved quickly as information gathered in the investigation allowed local officials to determine there was no danger, Rivera said.

“There was no device found or suspicious packages located during the search of the building,” Rivera said on Monday.

Results were the same on Sept. 21. That one took five hours for officials to clear the building after the threat was received via telephone.

During the first threat, the building was searched by a bomb-sniffing dog,  said Lt. Herbert Hinders.

The post office, surrounding businesses and offices including city hall were blocked off from public access.

The Sept. 21 event included additional concerns at nearby city hall.

“City hall was open during the lockdown and residents walked in to pay their water bill,” said City Manager Jared Langenegger.

Langenegger said anytime there is a bomb threat it puts a burden on the city’s resources — from police who have to secure the area to employees at the offices or departments that have public access limited.

The first threat occurred at 8:37 a.m. on Sept. 21.

A post office employee received the phoned-in threat.

The caller told the employee that a package with explosives had been placed inside the post office, officials said.

Rivera said the employee called 911 and reported the threat.

Hinders said the explosives team was contacted after attempts to contact the bomb-detecting dog handlers from Cannon Air Force Base were unsuccessful.

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