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Monday, March 25 , 2019, 2:01 am | Fair 50º


Grenade Brings Bomb Squad to Santa Barbara Police Station

World War II-era Japanese weapon among items dropped off by local resident

The bomb squad was called out to the Santa Barbara police station Tuesday after someone dropped off some old ammunition and a vintage grenade. (Police Department photo)

The bomb squad was called out to the Santa Barbara police station Tuesday after a man brought a box full of ammunition, including a live grenade, into the station's lobby.

The incident occurred at 11:15 a.m., when a man walked in to the lobby of the police station with three open boxes filled with ammunition as well as a World War II-era Japanese grenade, according to Capt. David Whitham.

"He said he was cleaning out the garage of a gentleman he knew" and found the munitions and wanted to turn them in, Whitham said.

The boxes were moved outside the building, and several officers with military service in their backgrounds were summoned, including Whitham, who inspected the grenade.

The grenade had no holes in it, which would render the bomb inert, so the group proceeded assuming the device was live and could go off

The area was cordoned off, people in adjacent buildings were told to shelter in place, and staff in the front of the police department were evacuated.

Santa Barbara city fire personnel were also on scene as well an AMR ambulance in case the grenade were to detonate.

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Department Bomb-Squad responded to the scene about an hour later, put the grenade in a secure container, and took it out to the Tajiguas Landfill, he said.

"If people come across items like this, they should leave it in place and call 911 immediately," he said, instead of trying to bring it in for inspection.

Staff was allowed to re-enter the police station building by 1:30 p.m., he said.

Noozhawk reporter Lara Cooper contributed to this report.

Noozhawk executive editor Tom Bolton can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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