Washington City officials test powdery substance after resident receives threatening letter

WASHINGTON CITY — A Washington City resident called police after receiving a threatening letter in an envelope that also contained an unknown, powdery substance Tuesday afternoon.

Washington City and St. George firefighters respond to test an unknown substance sent in a letter to a resident, Washington City, Utah, June 11, 2019 | Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

Washington City Police and Fire units responded to the scene around 1:45 p.m. to analyze the package. The incident was declared a possible hazardous materials situation.

A special operations squad truck was called in to assist. Washington County Emergency Services Director Jason Whipple coordinated the scene while the substance was being tested.

An analysis revealed the material was a nontoxic substance that posed no threat to the community, Willliams said.

Washington City and St. George firefighters respond to test an unknown substance sent in a letter to a resident, Washington City, Utah, June 11, 2019 | Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

Williams added that the resident opened the envelope to find that the letter was “threatening in nature,” and became alarmed when he noticed the powdery material inside.

Even though the material was not considered dangerous or deadly, he said, these types of incidents are treated seriously to protect the community, until additional information is gathered.

The FBI was also contacted because the substance was considered a potential bio-threat at the time. The incident remains under investigation.

No evacuations were necessary as the substance was found to be benign, Williams said. No injuries were reported.

The Washington City Police and Fire Department, St. George Fire Department, the Washington County Office of Emergency Management and the FBI responded to assist.

This report is based on statements from police or other responders and may not contain the full scope of findings. 

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Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2019, all rights reserved.

 

 

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