As several hundred protesters gathered for a peaceful demonstration Thursday at the intersection of Valencia Boulevard and McBean Parkway, law enforcement officials worked to clear a corner of the intersection in response to a report of a possible suspicious object.
Early reports indicated a “safety hazard” was found near protesters in front of the Shell gas station, located on the 24300 block of Valencia Boulevard.
California Highway Patrol officers and Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station deputies worked together to clear the intersection, asking protesters to step back and move to other corners as a precaution due to a “safety concern,” while the gas station was also evacuated.
While protests continued at the other three corners, more deputies arrived to assist with crowd control, as law enforcement worked to enforce a perimeter around the gas station.
Sheriff’s station officials later confirmed that the sheriff’s Arson and Explosives Detail had been called in to investigate and that the intersection had been cleared as a safety measure.
Once the Arson and Explosives Detail arrived on the scene, the suspicious device was safely transported farther from the crowd before it was announced to the crowd that they would be hearing a “bang” as the device was safely detonated.
“(The) bomb squad determined it did not contain any incendiaries, (but the) item was definitively designed to cause harm to others when tossed into a crowd, etc. We’re glad someone found it to keep protesters safe,” a social media post from the Sheriff’s Department read.