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NCAA Tournament Arena Evacuated After Bomb Scare

Mar 16, 20062 mins
CSO and CISOData and Information Security

San Diego University’s Cox Arena, the location of a National Collegiate Athletic Association basketball tournament first-round men’s game, was evacuated on Thursday morning after bomb-sniffing dogs located a suspicious package just hours before tip-off, the Associated Press reports via

The package the canines flagged as suspicious was found inside a 4-by-6-inch condiment container in a vendor’s cart just outside the facility, according to the AP.

The scheduled game was between Alabama and Marquette, according to the AP.

Jim Caldwell, a Federal Bureau of Investigation spokesman, told the AP that a bomb robot had been deployed at the scene.

The suspicious parcel was removed by law enforcement and a bomb squad, the AP reports.

Fans and referees were ordered out of the arena and to a parking garage across the street until they were allowed to return two hours later, according to the AP.

The two teams stayed at their hotels during the incident, the AP reports.

Last week, the FBI issued a warning to local, state and federal law enforcement informing them of an unsubstantiated Internet threat on an NCAA sporting event involving explosives. For more, read FBI: Possible NCAA Terror Threat.

Maurice Luque, a San Diego Fire-Rescue Department spokesman, told the AP that authorities were first notified of the parcel at 9:18 a.m.

“It was some type of package that was described as looking like a small briefcase or a box,” Luque told the AP.

Hundreds of basketball fans roamed the area around the closed facility seeking information, and a number of them were never alerted that a potentially dangerous package had been discovered, according to the AP.

For related CSO content, check out Five Questions with Bomb Expert Richard Priem.

Keep checking in at our CSO Security Feed page for updated news coverage.

Managing Editor

Al Sacco was a journalist, blogger and editor who covers the fast-paced mobile beat for and IDG Enterprise, with a focus on wearable tech, smartphones and tablet PCs. Al managed writers and contributors, covered news, and shared insightful expert analysis of key industry happenings. He also wrote a wide variety of tutorials and how-tos to help readers get the most out of their gadgets, and regularly offered up recommendations on software for a number of mobile platforms. Al resides in Boston and is a passionate reader, traveler, beer lover, film buff and Red Sox fan.

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