Journal News Mail Handlers Report Suspicious Powder

The mail was opened in the White Plains Library parking garage Friday afternoon, police say.

Two mail handlers from The Journal News reported finding a suspicious powder in a package addressed to the media company's White Plains headquarters Friday afternoon, police said.

The package was opened inside a vehicle parked in the White Plains Library parking garage on Martine Ave. A mail handler reported the incident at the White Plains Public Safety Building next door at 12:23 p.m., said White Plains Police Commissioner David Chong.

The vehicle, a Cadillac, was quickly secured and will be towed from the lot, impounded, and searched at another location.

"We are going to conduct the search of the vehicle in a safe environment, we are not going to open the car and remove that powder inside the public parking lot," Chong said.

Two mail handlers who possibly came into contact with the package requested to be decontaminated, Chong said, and that process is underway.

The package was addressed to The Journal News' White Plains office at 1133 Westchester Ave., Chong said. The mail handlers said they had picked up the mail at another location and decided to open the package in the parking lot, Chong said.

The powder discovery is the second of its kind this week. The paper had a story on its website, LoHud.com, on Wednesday about another suspicious envelope with powder in White Plains. The powder was determined not to be a threat, according to the article.

The Journal News has been on a heightened state of awareness since, on Dec. 23, it published a controversial interactive map showing the names and addresses of handgun permit holders in Westchester and Rockland counties. Putnam County officials announced this week that a similar request for data in their county is being denied.

The paper also reported threats to police in White Plains and Clarkstown, according to stories from Patch and The Rockland County Times. The paper also hired security guards for its White Plains and West Nyack offices, its publisher confirmed to The New York Times, following a Rockland County Times story of the presence in West Nyack. The paper's small bureau in Mount Kisco does not appear to have guards.

The Journal News has fielded many calls, emails and comments since the report's publication. Go here to read the FAQ they published in response.


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