Bomb Threat Hoax Forces Evacuation of Downtown Durand Businesses
Phone Scammer Threatened to "Blow Up" D-Railed; Bar's Co-Owner Says Police, Fire Response Was Swift
Posted by Durand Now at 4:31pm 10/11/19
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It's an all clear in downtown Durand after a phone scammer posing as a Consumers Energy employee threatened to blow up D-Railed Bar & Grill on Friday afternoon. D-Railed co-owner Bob Patsey told Durand Now that the bartender took the call. The scammer told the bartender that the establishment owed on its energy bill and must pay the outstanding amount within 20 minutes. Patsey said the bar has taken several similar calls recently and the bartender knew immediately that it was a scam, so she hung up. But the scammer called right back and, this time, said if the bill wasn't paid within ten minutes, "they would blow up the building," Patsey said.
Still, believing it to be a hoax, the bartender hung up and called 911. Patsey said Durand Police Chief Jason Hartz arrived 30 seconds later, and another officer just a minute after that.
Durand Police and Fire, following protocol and doing due diligence, evacuated businesses and apartments on both sides of Saginaw Street, between Clinton and Main Streets. Despite being certain there was no real threat, Patsey said he understood that the officers had to follow certain steps and further praised their swift response and handling of the situation.
Saginaw Street was closed for about an hour and a half before the authorities' investigation determined the call was, in fact, a hoax. By 4:30pm an 'all clear' was called.
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