LUMBERTON, MS (WDAM) - Things in downtown Lumberton are back to normal after concerns over a suspicious device caused a disruption most of the day. Officials have determined the device was not an explosive device.
Interim Police Chief Adam Jones said the package was discovered at the Shell gas station at the intersection of U.S. Highway 11 and State Route 13 around 8 a.m. Monday.
Robert Owen Sr. says he was pumping gas when he noticed the suspicious looking device sitting on a trash can beside the gas pump.
"I looked over at the trash can and I saw what looked like a little bottle sitting on top. I didn't think much about it. I went ahead and finished pumping my gas, put my lid on, and I got back around, and I looked again, that's when I thought I saw a little naked wire sticking out,” explained Owens.
Owen then told the store clerk to call the Lumberton police department. Interim Police Chief Adam Jones says once his crews arrived at the gas station, they called the Lamar County Sheriff’s Office for assistance.
The area around the gas station was evacuated and traffic was diverted away from the area for hours as the investigation cautiously moved forward.
The Jackson Explosive Ordinance Disposal team was called in from Jackson to assist with the device. The EOD x-rayed the scene and then used a disruption shot to determine if it was an active explosive.
Lamar County Sheriff Danny Rigel said while the package was not an explosive device, it did look very realistic.
"They (EOD) went and examined it and found that it was very realistic looking, but there were no explosives in the device. Everything is good. It one of those things where you’re better safe than sorry,” said Rigel.
No one was hurt during the incident and the investigation has been turned over to the Lumberton Police Department. The evacuation has been lifted and roads around the gas station have reopened.