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Suspicious package empties pharmacy, art-school buildings; doors locked at Boston Latin

Longwood Avenue shut down

A normally bustling Longwood Avenue shut down, people ordered to other side. Photo by Matt Colvin.

UPDATE: Suspicious package found at Harvard Medical School building; partial evacuation called around 12:45 p.m.

Police emptied MCPHS University and MassArt buildings at Longwood Avenue near Huntington and put the nearby Boston Latin School in "safe mode" around 11:30 a.m. as the bomb squad investigated a suspicious package inside.

Shortly after 11:50 a.m., bomb technicians determined the package was not harmful. The university began letting students back in and Boston Latin came out of safe mode.

The scene on Palace Road (Photo by Kyle):

Scene on Palace Road

Police Commissioner Evans and Supt. Bernard O'Rourke on scene (photo by Matt Colvin):

Police officials on scene


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They moved everyone away from the building. Police blocked Longwood at Louis Pasteur and at Huntington. Police tape as far away as the Gardner Museum. Doors locked and guards posted at Latin.

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Just got notice that another building in Longwood (HIM) is also being partially evacuated for a suspicious package.

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Good Afternoon,

This is Headmaster Lynne Mooney Teta, calling to inform you that our school was placed into safe mode for approximately 20 minutes this morning.
This decision was made due to a suspicious item in our neighborhood. The item was not located at the school.

BLS was placed into safe mode as a precautionary measure, at about 11:35 a.m.

Boston and School Police quickly assisted us, and there was minimal disruption to the school day.

Please call our main office if you have any questions or concerns, at 617-635-8895.

Thank you.

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"Safe Mode"... so they rebooted Windows 95 into "Safe Mode".

IMAGE( http://www.datarecoverytools.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2009/11/windows-95-safe-mode.jpg )

Sorry I am getting a laugh out of their wording. Yes I've been doing computers far too long and it's starting to effect my brain.

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is that people only bother to report them in the few weeks following a terrorist attack, or during an event that reminds people of a previous terrorist attack.

Taking due diligence of suspicious packages is key to preventing issues, but I often think of the number of "suspicious packages" I see lying around most cities that get ignored on a daily basis until there's an incident somewhere else.

Today, it's a suspicious package and people call the police. Next month, it's "some jerk is dumping his trash next to the city's streetside compactor" and "Ugh, this homeless guy keeps leaving his sleeping bag and backpack in the doorway so I have to step over it."

Of course, someday one of those "kitchen trash bags" or "sleeping bag and backpack" will turn out to be something nefarious, and we'll all wonder why it didn't get reported.

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I thought it was an actual physical thing that was where it shouldn't be, that was determined to be not suspicious, but stand to be corrected.

This sort of thing has been going on since at least the Marathon - the bomb squad is kept busy responding to backpacks and suitcases and other things that so far, fortunately, have just been left behind by the careless, not actual explosive devices. I'm not sure this is really any different, except something seemed off enough to bring both the police commissioner and one of his superintendents to the scene.

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What bizarre but legal object was in the suspicious package?

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