A police cruiser. Photo by John Schreiber.
A police cruiser. Photo by John Schreiber.

An object that looks like a hand grenade was found Saturday near a Bank of America at the Lakewood Center Mall in Lakewood, triggering a bomb squad response, firefighters at the scene said.

Firefighters and paramedics were dispatched to the bank branch at 1:09 p.m. to Del Amo Boulevard at Lakewood Avenue, where a command post has been set up behind the bank, a county fire department dispatcher said.

The dispatcher would only confirm that a suspicious package had been found. A sheriff’s bomb squad was dispatched to the location, according to firefighters at the scene.

The threat comes at a time when federal authorities have warned Americans of possible terrorism around the July 4 holiday.

In a joint bulletin, the FBI, the National Counterterrorism Center and the Department of Homeland Security did not warn of any known active plot, warned that extremists could launch attacks tied to Independence Day or in reaction to perceived defamation of the Prophet Mohammed, CNN reported.

“We are encouraging all law enforcement to be vigilant and prepared,” the statement from Washington read, in part. “We will also adjust security measures, seen and unseen, as necessary to protect the American people.”

—City News Service

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