A mysterious package labeled “anthrax” led to an evacuation of Congresswoman Maxine Waters’ office in Los Angeles on Tuesday, officials said.
Police responded to the location around 2:30 p.m. and called in a hazardous materials team from the Los Angeles Fire Department, an LAPD source told the Daily News.
“There was an investigation of an item somehow left behind at the office. It turned out to be nothing dangerous whatsoever,” the source said.
“The information we got was that it was a package labeled ‘anthrax,’” a source with the fire department said.
The police source said the investigation would be turned over to federal officials for a possible probe into who was behind the apparent hoax.
Waters is a prominent Democrat known for being one of President Trump’s most outspoken critics.
She recently made comments urging people to confront White House officials they encounter in public.
A woman answered the phone at the Los Angeles office around 5 p.m. local time but declined to comment on the day’s drama. Emails sent to spokespeople for the congresswoman were not immediately returned.
The suspicious package turned up just days after a right-wing militia group called The Oath Keepers planned a protest of the Los Angeles office but then backed out at the last minute.
The group’s founder, Stewart Rhodes, said the group “bowed out” at the request of the LAPD.
“They strongly advised us to not proceed,” he told The News in a brief phone interview Thursday evening.
Rhodes said the action was organized by his group’s California chapter and that he never planned to attend in person.
“I think that they probably made the smartest decision they’ve made in a long time,” community resident Cliff Smith said in phone interview after attending a counter-protest that day in support of Waters.
Story by NANCY DILLON – The New York Daily News