The Valdez Star - Serving Prince William Sound and Copper River Basin

By Lee Revis
Editor, Valdez Star 

Bomb threat faxed to Napa store one of several across the US

Police investigate threat that was repeated across the country as hoax


Steve Revis photo

Napa employee Richard Albright (left) and police officer Chris Sims (right) after the store opened Monday post-bomb threat.

A Valdez business received a bomb threat Monday - one of several reported across the country.

"Good Morning, I'll be brief," a fax sent to the Napa Auto Parts store in Valdez reads. "I installed explosives in the building. If you do not send in the amount of $25,000 by May 31st I will blow up this whole block. If you try to contact the police I'll know. I also have access to your computers and email addresses. Go to the nearest WesternUnion agency and send the amount to Emerson Eduardo Rodrigues Setim. The passport number is FO645170. It's a brazilian passport. The city that the money will be withdraw is Chicago, Illinois, USA. Do as I say and no one will get hurt. P.S. I repeat if you try to contact the police i will known."

Typos were left in tact in the above message.

An insurance company in Massachusetts and a newspaper printing plant in Kentucky were also faxed similar demands according to online news reports.

Valdez police notified of the threat in Valdez Monday morning.

"Yeah, when I opened up I saw it on the fax machine," said Richard Albright, a Napa employee, who opened the store on Egan Drive at 10 a.m. Monday.

There was no information printed on the fax reflecting the location it was sent from.

"I was scared to death," he joked, before adding, "No, we followed protocol."

Albright said protocol dictated notifying the police, store management and evacuating the building.

"We were shut down for a couple of hours," he said.

The store was reopened after police gave the building the all clear.

"They did their thing," Albright said regarding the police response.

A similar situation played itself out Saturday in London, Kentucky when an almost identical fax was found at Southeast Kentucky Publishing, a newspaper printing company.

Kentucky state police found the faxed bomb threat to be a hoax according to an area newspaper, the Sentinel Post.

The same fax caused an even bigger scene in Whitman, Massachusetts according to the Patriot Ledger.

"Buildings were evacuated and Route 18 was shutdown for nearly two hours in Whitman Tuesday morning, after a business received a bomb threat demanding $25,000," the newspaper reported.

The target, Conway Insurance, received the threat early Tuesday morning.

Steve Revis photo

The bomb threat that was sent to Napa in Valdez via fax.

"Whitman police and fire personnel responded to the scene and the nearby Burger King and Marcello's sub shop were evacuated," the Patriot Ledger reported.

Responders from two separate police departments were called in to reroute traffic around the busy roads.

The Valdez police department's bomb squad was not activated as part of Monday's investigation.

In year's past, suspicious objects have been used as bomb squad practice by the police department, including a suspicious object found under the fuel tank at the old junior high school and a piece of baggage left behind at the airport.

The suspicious object found at the middle school was later determined to be part of a geocache hunt. Baggage determined to be personal items such as toothpaste. Both were exploded by police for practice.


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