Suspicious box shuts down an area of downtown Langley
A large box with the words “Do Not Touch Highly Explosive” written on it shut down 204 Street, beside the IGA on Friday morning.
The area was re-opened an hour later and no explosives were found, confirmed Langley RCMP spokesperson Const. Craig Van Herk.
A call came in at around 8:20 a.m. about a suspicious box. Police arrived and were considering calling in the bomb squad. But once they saw that the box, which once held a Colorado XT pontoon boat, was empty, they worked on the idea that the writing was a hoax.
“The concern with these kinds of calls is they tie up a significant amount of police resources,” said Van Herk.
The forensic identification team arrived and lifted fingerprints from the box. The writing was done with a Sharpee type felt marker.
Gordon Till, a worker at Langley Lodge, said a woman told him that she saw a lady drag the pontoon box out of the dumpster behind the Army & Navy around 6:30 a.m. She then dragged the box behind her bike, up the back alleyway and around the corner to 204 Street. She abandoned it a few metres away, leaving it lying against an electric box.
Within a few hours, acting on information from witnesses, Langley RCMP were able to track down the 40-year-old Langley woman in question. She is known to them for mental health issues and had been struggling the past few days, said Van Herk.
She is now in the psychiatric ward of Langley Memorial Hospital. Police won’t likely press charges against her as long as she is seeking medical help, said Van Herk.
Witnesses reported hearing an explosion earlier in the morning. Police confirm that they did investigate a call of a loud bang heard in that exact area at around 5:45 a.m. Patrols of the area were made but nothing could be found, said Van Herk.
Ty Wernitz, a Brighton Apartments resident, said he heard a loud explosion around 5:30 or 5:45 that morning.
“I heard a transformer explode and it was louder than if a lightening bolt hit it. Then about a dozen car alarms went off.”
Wendy Miller and other nearby residents standing with her said they heard an explosion as well.
“It shook the whole bedroom,” she said.