LIMA — An individual said by authorities to be “related” to a what was described as suspicious package dropped off at the Meijer retail store in Lima Sunday evening was questioned and released by sheriff’s deputies following the incident.
Authorities did not release the name of the individual on Monday.
The big-box store at 3298 Elida Road was evacuated for some five hours Sunday evening after the suspicious package was brought into the store. The package prompted concerns among employees and led to all customers and store workers being asked by first responders to vacate the premises.
Andre McConnahea, public information officer with the Allen County Sheriff’s Office, on Monday said detectives are continuing their investigation into the incident. He said additional details likely will be provided in the next few days explaining the series of events surrounding what was first believed to be a bomb scare at the retail establishment.
In a statement released Monday, McConnahea said the Meijer store was evacuated shortly after 6 p.m. Sunday after the sheriff’s office was alerted by employees of the business that a suspicious package had been brought into the store.
“Out of an abundance of caution, the business and property was evacuated of all customers and employees. Allen County EMA, Allen County Bomb Squad, Ohio Highway Patrol and the American Township Fire Department were also dispatched to the scene,” the statement said. “Federal law enforcement was notified as well. The package was inspected by the bomb squad, with the assistance of a specialized robot, and its contents were determined to be non-hazardous.”
Employees were permitted to go back into the store shortly before 11 p.m.
No charges or arrests related to the incident have been made at this time.
The alert prompted a response from several area law enforcement agencies and first responders, including the Allen County Sheriff’s Office, the American Township Fire Department, the Ohio State Highway Patrol and the Allen County EMA.
There were no reports of injuries during the incident.
Reach J Swygart at 567-242-0464.