A suspicious device was found inside an empty dorm room at the University of San Diego. Bomb squad officials determined it was a smoke bomb, and it was safely detonated. NBC 7's Lea Sutton reports.
Police and bomb squad officials responded to reports of a suspicious device at the University of San Diego Saturday.
The device was reported on campus around 1:40 p.m. in the 5900 block of Linda Vista Road.
SDPD Lt. Joe Ramos told NBC 7 the device resembled a pipe bomb and was found inside an empty dorm room by a USD security officer during a routine dorm check.
The security officer then contacted police, who requested assistance from bomb squad officials.
According to SDPD officials, the device was brought to USD’s public safety office at the Hughes-Clark administration building on campus.
“It was a cylinder-shaped object with batteries and some wires attached,” explained Lt. Ramos. “Obviously enough to give us some concern.”
The campus was put on lockdown while officials investigated.
A fire crew, ambulance and officials from USD's department of public safety were also at the scene along with police and bomb squad crews.
By 2:45 p.m., Lt. Ramos said the crews were in the process of sending an explosives robot in to examine the device and take an X-ray to determine exactly what it was and whether it posed a threat.
The robot determined the device to be a smoke bomb. By 4:30 p.m., officials had safely detonated it.
Police said they have indications of who may be responsible for the smoke bomb, but had not yet been able to contact anyone as of Saturday night.
“At this point we do not know if there was any malicious intent, however the makeup of the device was very well done – enough to make us very concerned about it initially,” said Lt. Ramos. “[We’re] not as concerned anymore now that we’ve detonated it and realized it’s probably just a smoke bomb -- a good hoax at best.”
No injuries were reported. Officials said there was little threat to USD students during this incident, since it's winter break and most of them were off campus.