A Florida Post Office was evacuated Thursday after a “suspicious package” began leaking an unknown oily substance, according to Martin County Fire Rescue spokesperson Daniel B. Harshburger.
Crews were called to the Jensen Beach Post Office by employees. The Martin County Fire Rescue Hazardous Materials Response Team was also called.
The post office was evacuated at 10:41 p.m.
Harshburger said that the substance was later identified as moonshine.
During the incident two people were transported to a local area hospital for evaluation Harshburger said.
The Martin County Sheriff’s Office bomb squad was called to the scene as a precaution, sheriff’s office spokesperson Rhonda Irons told tcpalm.com. She said deputies assisted fire rescue officials with evacuating the post office and helping to keep people from entering the area.
The post office has since reopened.
A Lake Worth man who has a past arrest for cockfighting, was again charged today with violating his probation.
He allegedly stopped by a post office to retrieve a live rooster.
City police officers arrested Danny Pham, 36, shortly before 1:30 p.m. after they said they observed him picking up the rooster from the U.S. Postal Service location on North Seacrest Boulevard.
Police allege that Pham’s intention was to use the rooster for fighting and gambling purposes.
Pham was one of seven men arrested during the Super Bowl in February 2009 on charges of being involved with cockfighting.
He told Palm Beach County sheriff’s deputies at the time that he had invited friends over for a party to watch the football game and that he was unaware of what was happening in his backyard.
According to the sheriff’s report, deputies that night found a makeshift arena behind Pham’s home on Palomino Drive. Deputies saw 89 roosters in cages, as well as 10 transport boxes, the sheriff’s report said. The deputies also found a series of tools and equipment that are used for cockfight, the report said.
Court records show that Pham pleaded guilty in that case but a judge withheld adjudication. He was later placed on probation and barred from possessing any animals.
Today’s arrest came after a city animal-control officer notified police that Pham was at the post office to retrieve the rooster.
The officers allegedly observed Pham pick up a white, square box with holes in it and markings that read “live animal.”
The officers stopped Pham as he walked to his car. Pham told the officers that the bird was “not his chicken” and said that he was “picking it up for a friend.”
The animal was confiscated and turned over to Palm Beach County Animal Care and Control.
In this day-and-age, it’s not the smartest thing to jog in what looks like a gas mask and body armor, and then jam a package in a post office box.
It could touch off what happened at the busy San Jose post office: a full-scale police response, complete with the bomb squad and a robot.
But San Jose police said the suspicious-looking jogger seen fidgeting with a package at a drop-off box was only working out in hard-core, albeit odd-looking, exercise gear.
“The guy said he was wearing a cardio mask,” said Sgt. Jason Dwyer. “It was his cardio day, and he was trying to lose weight.”
That’s not what a post office customer thought when the man in the weird mask and vest was stuffing a package in a blue mail box. The customer called police, and in a flash, the post office was on lockdown, with 150 employees and customers tucked away in the back.
The San Jose police bomb squad, the Fire Department’s hazardous materials unit and the postal inspector descended on a normally quiet strip of North San Jose. A robot detonated the package, which turned out, police said, to be a bunch of calendars.
“My friends kept messaging me, Is this you? Is this you?” recounted Long Hoang, who lives near the post office and is a student at Cal State East Bay in Hayward.
About 12 weeks ago, Hoang became an avid follower of the CrossFit exercise regimen, which he said, exuberantly, combines “this really creative combination of weight lifting, gymnastics and rowing.” He wears the mask to simulate high-altitude training. Hoang, who is 5 feet 4 inches, said he’s lost at least 20 pounds, and is now 142 pounds.
Many neighbors in the area frequently spot him running in his gear, doing squats and lunges at corners while he waits for the light to turn green.
As Hoang tells the story, he mistakenly received a package of calendars at his home, and thought he’d mail them back to the proper recipient while on an exercise run. The package didn’t fit the first time in the mail box, he said, so he had to fold it up and try a second time.
When Hoang later realized his actions had caused such a commotion, captured by this newspaper and many other media organizations, he called police Tuesday evening to say the suspicious man was him: a nursing student trying to get into shape.
Police said Hoang’s story checked out.
Hoang said he can’t really see what all the fuss was about.
“It was like straight out of a movie,” he said. “Some of my friends are telling me, ‘Hello? 9/11? Anthrax? Blah. Blah. Blah.’ And I’m just thinking about my finals and staying in my own little zone.”
Still, Hoang says he won’t be jogging to the post office any time soon.