Suspicious package evacuates store - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Suspicious package evacuates store

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WILLIAMSON COUNTY, Ill. -- A bomb scare for those inside a store in Williamson County Friday night. 

A bomb squad responded to a report of a suspicious object at the Grassy General Store off of Route 148 and Grassy Road southwest of Marion.

Williamson County Sheriff's Deputy Brian Murrah confirmed the suspicious object was a misplaced inert training device.

Multiple agencies responded to the scene just after 6:30 p.m. when the general manager, Elizabeth Garris, called police to report an object that appeared to be some type of explosive device at the business.

Garris tells News 3 a regular customer brought what looked like a bomb into the beer garden with him when another customer saw it, told staff and then she called police. 

"When he had left the store, he forgot it," Garris said. "The next customer that came in behind him approached me with the information. He had a picture because he saw it, panicked and moved it. Everyone who saw the picture said it was a bomb." 

Store owner Mike Singh said he does not believe this customer was trying to harm anyone inside the business. 

"Maybe the guy had one beer but by mistake he left the object in the beer garden and the next person sitting here, brought it to the manager and told her it looked like something suspicious," Singh said. 

Garris said there were about 10 people inside the store when they all evacuated. 

She says police told her and other staff members the bomb was fake. 

The store will open Saturday morning at 7 a.m.

Murrah said the object has been collected as evidence and the investigation into how the device became misplaced will continue.

The Illinois Secretary of State's Bomb Disposal Unit also assisted with this investigation.

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