Family Member Behind Bomb Scare After Lumps Of Coal Sent To Anaheim Church

ANAHEIM (CBS) — A bomb scare turned out to be just a case of bad blood between a woman and a relative who left her a box full of Christmas coal at an Anaheim church, police said Wednesday.

A woman called police around 8:00 a.m. to report that an unnamed relative had phoned her to say he left her a Christmas gift in a box in the 2200 block of West Orange Avenue, Anaheim police Sgt. Bob Dunn said.

Upon arrival on the scene, police discovered a shoebox wrapped in gold foil and red tinsel on a sign at Faith Lutheran Church, the OC Register reported.

When the woman told police the family member’s identity, officers recognized the name, Dunn said.

“She told us who it is and we said, `Oh yeah, we’ve had contact with him,”‘ according to Dunn, who said investigators have determined “he has an affinity for bombs and has manufactured realistic looking inoperative devices in the past.”

Orange County bomb squad investigators, who were summoned “out of an abundance of caution,” concluded it was just a shoe box decorated with red garland and filled with “Santa’s lumps of coal,” Dunn said.

“It appears to a family issue,” Dunn said, adding no one was arrested.

(©2011 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

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