San Diego

Random Items Found in Suspicious Boxes at 6th and B Streets Downtown

Just before 9:30 a.m., bomb squad officials and police officers opened the boxes, walked around the table, took photos and appeared to be smiling

The report of a suspicious stack of postal boxes shut down a busy block in downtown San Diego Wednesday and prompted the evacuation of a high-rise building that houses the San Diego Union-Tribune.

San Diego police said the boxes did not contain anything dangerous but rather held random items including an empty bag of chips.

Officer Billy Hernandez said police were called to 6th and B streets just after 8 a.m.  

Five shipping boxes were stacked on a patio table outside of 600 B Street.

San Diego police closed 6th Avenue between A and B streets to traffic and advised one building to shelter in place.

Meanwhile, investigators set up X-ray equipment to try and determine the contents of the boxes.

"Our hazmat team is there to investigate five packages," San Diego Fire-Rescue Public Information Officer Alec Phillip confirmed.

Just before 9:30 a.m., bomb squad officials and police officers opened the boxes, walked around the table, took photos and appeared to be smiling. 

The contents of the boxes included a shoe, 2 kids books, a football, an empty bag of chips and a hat, SDPD Sgt. Kevin Wadhams said.

There was also an air pump around the box. 

“There was a camera that showed somebody dropping off the packages at approximately 1:45 a.m.," Wadhams said. “But nothing could be made out on that image of a description of the person."

The U.S. Postal boxes were not postmarked or addressed and had no return address, he added. 

Officers reopened B Street to traffic at approximately 9:35 a.m. 

Images: Suspicious Packages at 6th and B Streets in San Diego

"Due to the threats and devices being found [Wednesday] on the east coast, the area was evacuated so the contents of the boxes could be examined," SDPD officials said in a written statement.

Five "potential explosive devices" sent to Hillary Clinton, former President Barack Obama, billionaire philanthropist George Soros, ex-Attorney General Eric Holder and the CNN station in Manhattan's Time Warner Center are believed to be linked, law enforcement said Wednesday. 

Law enforcement officials say at least three of the parcels -- those addressed to Clinton, Obama and Soros -- had a manila outer packaging and the devices had stamps on them.

Wadhams said the San Diego incident did not appear related to the East Coast events.

One SDUT reporter said the 24-floor San Diego Union-Tribune building was evacuated. 

Ben Sullins owns a space in 600 B and was standing on the corner, waiting to be told he could enter the building.

“I don’t know what’s going on but we’re not allowed to be in,” Sullins said. 

U.S. Senator Kamala Harris has an office in the 600 B Street building. 

Her staff posted a message via Twitter saying the office was evacuated as part of the incident. 

"The packages were not addressed to the Senator or our office. We are grateful to the San Diego Police Department for their work to swiftly investigate this issue," said Lily Adams, Communications Director. 

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