White powder found in Idaho Capitol Complex

For the second time in November, a white powdery substance was found inside the Idaho Capitol Complex, initiating an emergency response.

The latest incident occurred at approximately 8 a.m. on Tuesday in a mail room in a parking structure located northeast of the statehouse. The Boise police said that a white powdery substance was found on a bundle of letters, according to KTVB.com.

A hazmat team was immediately called to investigate the powder, which was found to be a false alarm. A block of downtown Boise, however, was closed while emergency teams responded. The entire building was not closed, but the three mail room employees were quarantined while tests were carried out on the substance.

Two hours after the powder was discovered, investigators determined that it was harmless. It is thought to have been a residue left from rubber bands that were wrapped around the letters or possibly left by a mail sorting machine.

Mail services at Boise State University, the capitol and government agencies in Boise experienced mail delays because of the incident.

Earlier in the month, an employee in the Idaho Attorney General’s Office opened an envelope that contained a white powder along with a note detailing a bomb threat. The note said the powder was anthrax, but it was later found to be only crushed aspirin.