Hampton partially evacuated for suspicious item

Two-block evacuation zone around post office lasted for two hours.

Posted: May 7, 2018 9:52 PM
Updated: May 8, 2018 6:36 AM

HAMPTON, Iowa - Hampton residents are safe after a concerning two hours.

Around 1:15 Monday afternoon, a call came into dispatch about a suspicious item in the front lobby of the Hampton post office.

Within a half hour, residents and businesses, including the Franklin County Courthouse, were evacuated within a 2-block radius of the post office, and Highway 3 was diverted around the area.

Around 2:30 p.m., an alert was sent to Hampton residents, telling them to avoid the radius. The Hampton-Dumont School District also posted on social media, saying that police had asked that buses taking children to that area of town be re-routed.

At 3:29 p.m., the all-clear was given for people to return to their homes, and the security perimeter was taken down.

As of now, police are not releasing any information about the package that prompted the threat. The postal inspector and fire marshall are investigating the situation.

After today, resident Doris Beer, who lives in the Parkway Apartments across from the post office, knows she can count on her community to come together in hard situations.

"There was a couple of the gals in the apartment building that came and checked on me after I got back to see if I was OK, which is very nice of them. I think that I found out that we kinda of look after each other," Beer says.

The Hampton Police Department was assisted by the Franklin County Sherriffs Office, Iowa State Patrol, Iowa DNR, Iowa DOT, U.S. Postal Inspector, State of Iowa Fire Marshall, Sheffield Police Department, City of Hampton Public Works, Hampton Fire Department, Franklin County EMA, Franklin General Ambulance, and North Iowa Public Transit.

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