California police departments ‘anthrax scare’ determined not hazardous
The unknown white powder that was received at five police departments in the San Francisco Bay area have been determined to be non-hazardous according to a KTVU report Friday.
The envelopes containing white powder were received via mail at Hayward, Union City, San Leandro, Oakland and Berkeley police departments.
At the Hayward Station, the white powder was discovered when a records clerk sorting through the station’s mail first discovered white powder leaking from an envelope Friday morning. This caused an evacuation of the facility and the dispatch of hazmat teams.
Similar events occurred at the other police departments.
At the Berkeley PD, the envelope containing the then unknown white powder was discovered after 2 pm. After evacuation of the building and the arrival of the hazmat team, it was determined that the powder was only a food paste product, and the building was given an all-clear.
The news source, Berkeleyside reported that just like in Hayward, the envelope was received as part of the ordinary mail delivery and was opened by a female member of the professional staff who worked at the front counter. “She recognized the need for caution and concern right away. She alerted her chain of command.”
Postal inspectors and the FBI are investigating the crime trying to determine who is the sender.
“There’s state statutes that have been violated and federal statutes, so it is very, very serious,” said Jeff Fitch, a United States postal inspector.