March 30th, 2010 | City, News

Bomb scare clears out courthouses

Traffic came to halt downtown for about an hour and a half Tuesday after police evacuated three New Haven courthouses because of a bomb threat.

The threat came shortly before 4 p.m. Police with bomb-sniffing dogs entered the courthouses starting around 5 p.m. Yale, New Haven and state police, as judicial and federal marshals, were also present at the scene.

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State police said they did not find any suspicious items in the courthouses.

At 5:30 p.m., police reopened Elm and Church streets, except for one block of Church Street between Elm and Wall streets.

“We responded in an appropriate manner,” City Hall spokeswoman Jessica Mayorga said Tuesday afternoon. “An evacuation took place, and an investigation is ongoing.”

The disruption comes three weeks after a bomb threat prompted the evacuation of the Omni Hotel. A week before that, two cell-phone calls from an unidentified caller threatening to blow up two New Haven public schools forced them to close temporarily.

Read more in tomorrow’s News.