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Bomb threat clears Montgomery County courthouse

Washington Post editors

Update, 12:40 p.m.:

We caught Montgomery County Sheriff Raymond Kight coming out of the circuit courthouse. "You've got to take it seriously these days, and we do," he said.

Someone called from the nearby Metro train station in Rockville, reporting there were bombs inside the courthouse. "I hope you find them before they blow up," he said, according to the sheriff.

The building was evacuated about 9 a.m., not a simple process given some of its occupants. At least one convicted murderer was set for sentencing today, though it was unclear if he'd arrived from the jail at the time of evacuation. In any event, the dogs and the police who went inside found no bombs.

Update, 11:30 a.m.:

Authorities are allowing people back into the courthouse.

Original post:

First it was the snow. Now it's a bomb threat. Either way, justice in Montgomery County is grinding slowly.

As of about 11:15 a.m., the courthouse had been emptied for about two hours as investigators check the credibility of the threat.

Lawyers, judges and jurors are camped in the cafeteria of an adjacent government building. Prosecutors and defense attorneys are trying to figure out how the delay will affect their cases, especially with holiday days off coming up.

-- Dan Morse

By Washington Post editors  |  December 22, 2009; 11:20 AM ET
Categories:  Dan Morse , From the Courthouse  
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