Police Say Suspicious Package Was Cooler

By Lee Hermiston, Reporter

Linn County Sheriff's Department Bomb Squad and Marion Police respond to a report of a suspicious package at Collins Road Square in Marion. The package turned out to be a cooler. (Lee Hermiston/KCRG-The Gazette)

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By Ellen Kurt

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa - A suspicious package caused a brief scare at Collins Road Square about midday on Wednesday.

As it turns out, the only threat was a little indigestion.

“It’s just the leftovers of somebody’s lunch,” Marion Police Sgt. John Chipman said, describing the soft-sided cooler that triggered a response from the Linn County Sheriff Department's Bomb Squad.

Chipman said a call about a suspicious package came in at 11:15 a.m. The package was a small cooler leaned up against a light pole in front of Casual Male XL, one of several businesses located inside Collins Road Square. Protocol dictated that several businesses, including Casual Male XL, West Music and Half-Priced Books were locked down while the package was X-rayed.

“Ninety-nine percent of the time, it turns out to be nothing,” Chipman said. “Just like today, but, you want to err on the side of caution.”

Chipman said there was no identification inside the cooler.
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