PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Police are investigating after three reports of suspicious devices found on Pittsburgh’s South Side within a half mile of each other and in the span of nine hours.
The first device was found at the intersection of Brosville and St. Thomas Street a little past 11 p.m. Thursday. The object consisted of wires, an alarm clock, aluminum foil and it was beeping.
The bomb squad disposed of that device.
An hour later, officers were called to South 18th Street where several streets were blocked off as police investigated. The bomb squad was not needed.
“I don’t think any place is immune, crazy things happen all over the world all of the time,” said Milton Barr, of the South Side. “That’s why life’s a struggle.”
A little after 8 a.m. on Friday, the third call went out for Pius Street on the South Side Slopes. The bomb squad responded for a beeping device wrapped in aluminum foil near a church.
In all three cases, Pittsburgh police found a sensor used by retail stores to prevent shoplifting. Thieves sometimes cover them in foil when they steal items to keep them from beeping.
“I don’t know. Some people don’t realize what they are doing,” said Kayla Sparkman, of the South Side. “Maybe they just threw them there and didn’t really think about it or maybe somebody did it intentionally just to mess with people.”
Investigators now say the devices may have been discarded by thieves after removing them from stolen items. They say it does not appear they were intentionally placed to cause panic or alarm.