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School and building evactuated for bomb scare

Frank McCoppin Elementary School, in the Richmond District of San Francisco, on Thursday afternoon soon after the school was evacuated due to a report of a suspicious package nearby.
Frank McCoppin Elementary School, in the Richmond District of San Francisco, on Thursday afternoon soon after the school was evacuated due to a report of a suspicious package nearby.
Photo by Thomas K. Pendergast

San Francisco police say there is "no merit" to a report of a suspicious package, which prompted the evacuation of an elementary school Thursday afternoon and a bomb squad investigation.

SFPD Officer Albie Esparza said police received a call at 2:40 p.m. on Thursday, reporting the package's location in an alley off the side of the 600 block of 6th Avenue and describing it as "suspicious."

By 3:02 p.m. Frank McCoppin elementary, a public school with an enrollment of 266 students from grades K-5th, was evacuated and the adjoining streets were cleared of foot and vehicle traffic.

A nearby apartment building was also evacuated.

Both 7th and 6th avenues were closed between Balboa and Cabrillo streets.

Dozens of children and adults were seen gathered at the corner of 7th Ave. and Balboa St. as yellow police tape went up.

Officer Carlos Manfredi of the SFPD said the department's Explosive Ordinance Disposal team was called to the scene, where, after searching the campus with bomb-sniffing dogs, they determined that the package was not dangerous so they called off the evacuation and the alert at about 4:10 p.m.

At 4: 11 p.m. 7th Avenue was reopened for traffic and a few minutes later the children were led back into the school grounds.

Manfredi said there were no reports of injuries.

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