Cops: Yonkers Cross County Shopping Center package may contain heroin

The Cross County Shopping Center on Mall Walk

The Cross County Shopping Center on Mall Walk in Yonkers. (Feb. 23, 2012) (Credit: Angela Gaul)

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Police believe a suspicious package found at the Cross County Shopping Center Thursday morning probably contains drugs, but they'll rely on lab results to say for sure.

An employee found the brick-sized package in the open-air shopping center's parking lot at 9 a.m. and brought it to the mall's management office, where staff called police, Cross County spokeswoman Liz Pollack told The Associated Press. The mystery item was wrapped in paper packaging, cops said.

The mall opened on time at 10 a.m. and most shoppers were oblivious to the investigation after cops brought the package to a tunnel nearby, away from shoppers. They determined there was no threat before removing the item at 3 p.m., said Lt. Joseph Solicito of the Yonkers Police Department.

"We know it's not dangerous," Solicito said. Beyond that, he said, "We really don't know" what's inside the package.

Cops called in a hazardous materials team and K-9 units, and they took X-rays of the package, News12 reported.

The X-rays didn't reveal any wiring or explosive components, and one of the K-9 units signaled it had caught the scent of narcotics, but police told News12 they weren't sure whether the detection was genuine or whether the dog was excited by the commotion in the area.

Techs from Westchester County's bomb squad got a peek inside the package.

"It was described as a brown, grainy substance," Yonkers Deputy Chief Frank Intervallo said.

Now they'll wait for lab tests to help identify the contents. Solicito said he didn't know whether any of the mall's surveillance camera provided a view of the section of the parking lot where the package was found, but he said that was part of the ongoing investigation by detectives.

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