Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN

November 29, 2012

Cumberland one of many counties targeted with bomb threat

By Gary Nelson
Senior staff writer

CROSSVILLE — The Cumberland County Clerk's office was one of at least 20 courthouse offices across the state that was targeted with a bomb threat Tuesday morning.

County employees stood in the cold, or retreated to their vehicles, while the courthouse was evacuated and searched extensively for approximately 45 minutes. No explosive devices were discovered.

Crossville Police and fire department investigators responded to the scene.

Chris South, deputy Crossville Fire Chief, said, "As a precaution we have evacuated the building and we are doing a complete sweep of the building just to be sure there isn't anything in there."

According to Crossville Police Detective Mark Rosser, "The call came around 10:12 a.m. and a male caller made the statement that there were several explosive devices in the courthouse and they would detonate."

Lisa Smith, an employee at the Cumberland County Clerk's office, took the call and said, "the man's voice was very clear and plain."

Daniel Foster, special agent with the State Fire Marshal's Office Bomb and Arson Section, said the threat was one of dozens across the state Tuesday morning and there were other threats similar in other states around the country recently.

Foster said the state's fire marshal office would subpoena the records of VolFirst in order to help track the number of where the call came in the Cumberland County case.

At 10:50 South said the offices at the Cumberland County Courthouse were clear and were reopened by department heads at their discretion.

"We didn't find anything suspicious and we searched from the basement all the way up to and including the clock tower.

The case remains under investigation and any developments will be reported in a future story in the Crossville Chronicle.