Cops: Hartsdale bomb scare a false alarm

A member of the Wetschester County bomb unit

A member of the Wetschester County bomb unit cools off after removing his helmet while reacting to what was reported as a suspicious item on North Central Avenue near Laurel Street in Hartsdale. Traffic was re-routed around Washington Avenue. (Sept. 20, 2012) Photo Credit: Xavier Mascarenas

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A suspicious package triggered a brief bomb scare in Hartsdale Thursday morning, but turned out to be an anti-theft device from a clothing store, authorities said.

Police responded to 155 N. Central Ave. around 11:15 a.m. after what appeared to be a pipe wrapped in aluminum foil with wires sticking out was discovered, Greenburgh Police Chief Joseph DeCarlo said.

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Members of the Westchester County bomb squad and Hartsdale fire department were called in to investigate, and the area within a roughly 300-foot radius was evacuated, DeCarlo said. Highview School, located on nearby Laurel Street, was locked down for a brief period, and Central Avenue was closed to traffic between North Washington Street and Harvard Drive.

The scene was cleared just after noon, authorities said.

DeCarlo said authorities had yet to determine whether the package, which he said is commonly used by shoplifters to avoid security detection, was intentionally placed.

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