Hundreds forced to evacuate Shorewood apartments following bomb threat hoax
Annie Scholz reports Video by tmj4.comvideo
SHOREWOOD- Hundreds of people were forced to evacuate after a bomb threat at a Shorewood apartment complex Monday afternoon.
It turns out, the whole thing was a hoax.
Shorewood Police Chief David Banaszynski and his officers had to notify 600 people they were in danger after they say Thomas Yela called in a threat to River Park Apartments.
Police say Yela had been thrown out of the complex numerous times before. This time, his friend was in hot water, and Yela lost it.
"His friend was asked to leave the building also and he (Yela) got mad and made a bomb threat that he had a bomb in both the 1600 and 1700 buildings," said Banaszynski.
Some residents were caught off guard when officers knocked on their door.
Rose Burns lives on the top floor. She grabbed her cat, Teeny, and ran for the elevator. "Where I go, she goes," said Burns to TODAY'S TMJ4's Annie Scholz.
Delores Morrissey lives on the 5th floor, and was eating dinner when the knock came. "He said there's a bomb threat and you have to leave the building immediately," explained Morrissey.
"This is the toughest evacuation the Village of Shorewood will ever have," said Banaszynski.
And get this, police caught Yela in the crowd, watching it all unfold.
After an exhaustive search of the buildings, floor by floor, tenants were eventually allowed back in, and wondering how anybody could cause such a commotion.
"I'd just like to know why, you know," said Burns.
Banaszynski told TODAY'S TMJ4 that Yela was clearly intoxicated at the time of his arrest, and that he also threatened to blow up the Locust Street Bridge and a Shorewood courtroom. Those were also hoaxes.