May 20th, 2010
04:44 PM ET

Balloon with powder closes part of Independence Mall

Authorities evacuated the pedestrian area of Philadelphia's Independence Mall on Thursday after "a balloon with a powdery substance" was found near the Liberty Bell, authorities said.

Preliminary field tests were negative for explosives and radioactivity, FBI Special Agent J.J. Klaver told CNN, but were positive for an organic substance.

Klaver said a security guard found the balloon near the Liberty Bell Pavilion and alerted authorities. The FBI plans a news conference shortly, he said.

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Filed under: U.S.
soundoff (71 Responses)
  1. Triple A

    America has no Nads no more... We run and evacuate from our own shadow. Remember how many times the Capital building was evacuated lol. It was like Booo and everybody ran.

    May 20, 2010 at 5:58 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Chris the truth

    Man, the country is collectively as paranoid as a Vietnam vet living in China town...

    May 20, 2010 at 6:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Seriously??

      This makes no sense– Vietnam vet in China town? You do realize that animosity between Vietnam and China goes back millenia.

      May 20, 2010 at 7:27 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Steve

    The still have along ways to go in order to catch up with Boston. Shut down the city, then get back to me,

    May 20, 2010 at 6:05 pm | Report abuse |
  4. mary

    I'm thinking our 24 hour news machine and our ability to comment is a huge part of what keeps these things going..There is always a reaction and a discussion..It seems that could be really satisfying to the people nuts enough to do these things..
    Maybe we should go back to our 6 o'clock just the facts sort of news.. And stop encouraging the crazies..it's so easy to get that 5 min of fame in todays technological world.. It seems we are feeding this kind of thing. Perpetuating it..
    Maybe our right to have up to the minute 24 hour news isn't so 'right' after all.??

    May 20, 2010 at 6:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Just me

      You are sooooooo correct!!!! I mean i honestly dont think half of the united states "problems" would be much of a problem at all if the news kept a lot of the stories they tell to a "that state only" type thing. I can honestly say i really think there may not have been another school shooting type crime as bad as the Columbine school if we didnt have to see and read about it for weeks and months on end. I mean really, didnt the media even stop to consider all they were and continue to do is just fuel the fire, and give others ideas of how to get away with or plan something worse than what the previous did?

      May 20, 2010 at 6:44 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Keng

    "See It, Report It"- to the extreme

    May 20, 2010 at 6:15 pm | Report abuse |
  6. quiet_profi

    Are we really this stupid?
    last month a cooler with red bull , today a baloon.
    What kind of moron reports a baloon and what kind of a bigger moron responds.
    the enemy isn't terroism; it is stupidity and the american people are showing themselves to be masters of ignorance

    May 20, 2010 at 6:15 pm | Report abuse |
  7. D Truth

    Some druggie prolly lost his stash

    May 20, 2010 at 6:20 pm | Report abuse |
  8. John

    This is how we should use life sentence criminals. Goes something like this "Hey Tyrone, you see that balloon over there? We want you to go pick it up and check and see if its heroin or anthrax. If its heroin you can keep it, if its anthrax consider this your execution."

    May 20, 2010 at 6:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Justlaughin

      LOL that is probably the best comment i read on here!

      May 20, 2010 at 7:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • giambo

      that's funny as hell john....made my day

      May 20, 2010 at 9:04 pm | Report abuse |
  9. matt

    aaaahhhhhhhh..the balloons are attacking us..ahhaaaahhhh

    May 20, 2010 at 6:32 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Burbank

    Hmmm...... organic coating...... flour?

    May 20, 2010 at 6:33 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Burbank

    Falcon is hiding in the attic and his dad is having fun with ballons again to see if he can be a contestant on America's Top Terroist...

    May 20, 2010 at 6:36 pm | Report abuse |
  12. ATHF

    1/31/07- Never Forget.

    May 20, 2010 at 6:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • slozomby

      i would like to take this time to discuss hairstyles of the 70's

      May 20, 2010 at 6:44 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Burbank

    A tiny powdery UFO??

    May 20, 2010 at 6:38 pm | Report abuse |
  14. BWS

    When is the stupidity ever going to stop?????

    May 20, 2010 at 6:39 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Derecon

    I understand and agree that we are being a bit too paranoid. BUT I bet at least 3/4 of the people on here saying the terrorists are winning, and america is scared, and paranoid are the SAME people that will flip out when something actually happens saying that we should've done something to prevent it.

    May 20, 2010 at 6:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • BWS

      If we had been smart we would have spent all the money wasted on the Dept of Homeland Security and used it in covert ops overseas. Then maybe the TSA wouldn't be taking all our shampoo.

      May 20, 2010 at 6:45 pm | Report abuse |
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