The City of Ithaca issued a press release around 7:15 p.m. this evening with more information about the incident and the response from public safety personnel.
According to the release, the Tompkins County 911 Center received a phone call around 3 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 11, with a report of a suspicious package outside of the Bank of America building on the Commons.
The Ithaca police and fire departments responded to the scene and evacuated people from the Bank of America building, as well as nearby buildings. Later, all businesses and apartments on the Commons were evacuated, and the entire downtown pedestrian mall was cordoned off with police tape as the investigation took place at the scene. The Seneca County Canine Unit and the New York State Police Bomb Disposal Unit responded to the scene to assist in the investigation. Bangs Ambulance responded to the scene as well to provide emergency medical assistance if needed.
The package was deemed to be non-threatening by the New York State Police Bomb Disposal Unit and was secured as evidence. The Ithaca Commons and area businesses were re-opened to pedestrians at 7:00 p.m.
Official word of the re-opening came first from a post from Ithaca Mayor Svante Myrick on his Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/svantem), downtown Ithaca's pedestrian mall has been re-opened to the public.
Here's what Myrick posted:
"The Commons has been reopened. The threat has passed without incident. Thanks to the State Police who responded to the scene and x-rayed the package. Thanks too to IFD and IPD for their quick response."