Blacksburg residents react to road closure as police respond to threat about explosives

Published: Jan. 3, 2021 at 5:48 PM EST
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BLACKSBURG, Va. (WDBJ) - Police spent hours searching Sunday for the male suspect who police say made “delusional statements” about explosive devices.

There is still little information about what led to the incident, but N. Main Street was closed for hours, leaving many drivers and residents looking for ways to get home or around the scene.

Residents like Bob Smythers were surprised to see the road they normally take to get home was closed.

“We were just, we’ve just been out taking a little walk, and my daughter and wife and I. So we were coming back to get home and we came up by N. Main St. all of a sudden it’s been blocked off,” said Blacksburg resident Bob Smythers.

Responders quickly made a perimeter around the area to find the man and search for any explosives while residents turned around or looked for another way home.

“Anyway, so we’re just kind of sitting here waiting for them to open up or we may have to cut around and go back to get home, but we just left for a quarter of a mile from here,” said Smythers.

Police did find the man in about two hours. The Virginia State Police Explosives Unit later arrived to check the suspects’ vehicle for any explosives.

Officers stuck around N. Main Street to as a safety precaution until about 4 p.m.

Blacksburg Police, Blacksburg Fire, Virginia Tech Police, Virginia State Police and the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office all assisted with the case.

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