MNLA photo by Jay Martin

A 40-year-old Seal Beach man was charged Tuesday with making a false bomb threat in Seal Beach.

Walter Dale Hunter was charged with a felony count of criminal threats and single misdemeanor counts of false report of a bomb to police and false alarm, according to court records.

Police were dispatched around 11:35 a.m. Sunday when a fire alarm was pulled at the Eaves Apartment Complex at 333 First St., according to police. When officers arrived they saw the fire alarm was blaring but there were no signs of a blaze and Hunter was arrested on suspicion of intentionally triggering the alarm, police said.

As officers continued checking the apartment complex for signs of fire they came across a suspicious package placed in front of Hunter’s door, police said.

Hunter told officers the package was a “gift for the bomb squad,” police said. That triggered a hazardous materials alert response from the Orange County Fire Authority and the Orange County Sheriff’s Department bomb squad.

Multiple other police agencies responded and two neighboring apartment buildings had to be evacuated, police said. The incident also led to a closure of Pacific Coast Highway for about an hour.

The package did not have any hazardous or explosive materials inside, police said.

Hunter was being held on $250,000 bail, according to jail records.

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