Fifth fake bomb threat reported in Mass. for the year

A fake bomb threat called into the police department in Ware, Massachusetts, marks the fifth hoax this year involving false claims of chemicals, explosives and hostage threats.

The threat targeted private residents across the street from a National Guard-run U.S. Army installation. A disguised voice called in the threat on Sunday directed against as many as 10 residences across the street from the 747th Military Police Company. The caller claimed to have weapons, including a chemical nerve agent, reports.

A similar hoax occurred in September in Barre, in April in West Brookfield and in January in Milton.

The chief suspect was a male who was the subject of a search in parts of western and central Massachusetts on Sunday after the reporting of the Ware incident. He was located later in the day and faced questioning. Officials said that no arrests had been made as of Monday afternoon.

Authorities said that the telephone conversation could be a terrorist crime under provisions of the USA Patriot Act.

The call resulted in more than 100 Ware and state firefighters and police officers, including the state hazardous materials unit and the bomb squad, responding to the scene. The officials found no explosives.

Thousands of drivers were detoured when Route 32 was closed to vehicle traffic from First Ave. to Anderson Rd. for approximately 10 hours, reports.