Defense Department training may have led to Arlington bomb scare, police say

A Department of Defense training exercise may have led to a bomb scare that closed a corner in the Courthouse neighborhood of Arlington Monday afternoon, police said.

Staff in a nearby hotel found a small canister marked “explosives” around 2 p.m. Arlington police spokesman Dustin Sternbeck said. Bomb squad testing deemed the container non-threatening, and the intersection was reopened about an hour later.

“We think there was possibly a Department of Defense training exercise that took place here this weekend and could have possibly been a canister that was left,” Sternbeck said.

DOD spokesman Mark Wright could not immediately confirm whether or not any such training took place, although he did say exercises in public areas are “rare.” Lt. Col. Tom Crosson, another Defense Department spokesman, also says it’s “highly unlikely” that the canister came from a DOD exercise, though it’s possible they were assisting another agency’s training.

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Rachel Weiner covers local politics for The Washington Post.

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