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'Suspicious' Noisy Car Prompts Evacuation Of Niles Buildings

October 26, 2018 - 3:27 pm

NILES (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- A “suspicious vehicle” that prompted a temporary evacuation Friday morning at an early voting site in north suburban Niles turned out to be broken down in the parking lot, authorities said.

Officers were called at 11:25 a.m. for reports of a suspicious vehicle parked outside the Niles Post Office, 6977 W. Oakton St., according to a statement from Niles Police Cmdr. Robert Tornabene. The caller “heard a noise coming from the vehicle” and called police.

Niles officers arrived to find the 1996 Toyota in the parking lot outside the post office and notified the Cook County Bomb Squad, Tornabene said. The post office and Niles Village Hall, which is next door, were evacuated as a precaution. There were about 50 people in the two buildings at the time of the evacuation.

A bomb squad dog checked the vehicle and “did not indicate any signs of a threatening nature,” police said. The evacuation was lifted by about 1 p.m.

Police have since contacted the owner of the Toyota, who said he loaned the vehicle to a friend, according to Tornabene. The vehicle broke down and was left in the lot overnight.

Police said “there was never a risk to the public” and no charges or citations have been issued.

A Cook County early voting site is located inside Niles Village Hall and was closed during the evacuation, according to a statement from the Cook County clerk’s office.

Tornabene said the voting site was reopened when the evacuation was lifted.

(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire & Chicago Sun-Times 2018. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)