Bomb Threat Call at Wal-Mart

A phoned-in bomb threat cleared the Lamar Wal-Mart discount store of employees and customers  at about 6:20pm on Thursday, July 11.  The Lamar Fire and Ambulance Department responded with about 16 persons in fire and ambulance units and the Lamar Police Department was on hand with about eight officers.  The Colorado State Patrol assisted in traffic control along Highway 50 during the response and Parmenter Street at Camino de Santa Fe was blocked to traffic as well.

Lamar Fire Chief Marshall Cook said two-man teams in protective gear searched the retail store department by department while other members checked the remaining vehicles in the parking lot for anything amiss.  All Wal-Mart employees were evacuated to the main entrance along Highway 50.  Detective Dave Reid said shoppers and employees exited the store without any problem, following instructions from the store’s PA system.  Reid said the only minor hitch was dispersing the shoppers who congregated at the front edge of the store once they were outside.  Reid said those persons were told to move away from any potential blast area around the building and most left for the evening.  Some customers who had the good/bad luck of parking close to the store and were considered in a danger zone, had to wait on the lot before the all clear was given and everyone was free to leave.

Reid said the police department will take steps to try to determine who made the call, or at least try to trace its origin.  “It was just a pretty generic-type message that came in,” he said.  He and Chief Cook said they’ll try to put together a cost estimate of time, equipment and responders to the prank call.  Obviously, Wal-Mart lost revenue while the store was searched.

By Russ Baldwin

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