Postal package probe discontinued

June 13, 1997

Postal officials are not investigating the origin of a suspicious package found at the U.S. Post Office in Hagerstown earlier this week, an official said Thursday.

Paul Trimbur, a postal investigator, said there is no further investigation of the package, which closed the post office for nearly two hours on Tuesday.

"There was nothing in there that could have done any harm to anyone," he said.

Trimbur said the package was X-rayed. When postal officials could not determine what it contained, they called bomb specialists from the state fire marshal's office. He said this is common.

"If you can't determine what's in there, it's better to be safe than sorry," he said. "If you're not 100 percent sure, a bomb is not something you want to second-guess on."


Faron Taylor, a spokesman for the state fire marshal's office, said technicians used a disruption method to open the package.

"A blank shotgun shell propels either air or water to provide a small force that can separate explosives from any trigger that might be in the package," he said.

This was a precautionary step, and no explosive materials were found.

Trimbur said postal officials rule out foul play in the vast majority of suspicious-package cases. Only when they cannot do they call in bomb specialists, he said.

"This happens all the time," he said.

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