Suspicious Containers Bear Ominous Words - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

01/30/04

Suspicious Containers Bear Ominous Words

"30 days 'til judgment"

Gulfport firefighters dressed in protective clothing, came face to face with those words written on two plastic containers. Inside was a clear liquid.

"It may be nothing more than water but there is writing on the outside that gives us pause. It makes us question what could be inside the product. It may be a threat, it may not have been a threat. We don't know, but we're not going to take that chance," Gulfport Fire Chief Pat Sullivan said.

With the parking lot of a nearby business roped off, and a small section of 34th Street shut down, firefighters carefully packed the containers in plastic drums to haul away. Chief Sullivan says they're treating what may have started as a hoax as a real danger.

"The FBI's been brought in. The state homeland security office has been contacted. Civil defense has been contacted. This is not an innocent hoax. If someone does this, this type of activity, not only are we looking to make sure that this isn't for real, but if it's a hoax, and we can prosecute them, we're certainly going to prosecute them."

Store employees, like Amanda Ealy, watched what was going on.

"They tell me there was a jug of chemicals of some sort at the light, which, I seen it when I came to work this morning. It had writing on it, but I didn't pay no attention to it. It's crazy. I mean, it's just the craziest thing I ever heard of or seen in my whole life. In New York City, yeah, but not here."

This is the second suspicious item found in Gulfport this week. Thursday a device used to detect explosive materials in the air was removed from the downtown area.

byMarcia Hill

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