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Columbus Police Chief: Officers Learned from Downtown Explosion Scare
COLUMBUS (Ken Hines) -- Police Chief Kim Jacobs believes her officers learned a great deal from a battery explosion that led to a massive response at the department's Downtown headquarters.
Anti-terrorism agents joined Columbus Division of Police officers and Franklin County deputies at the Marconi Blvd. headquarters on September 24, when the explosion of a battery inside the building touched off a bomb scare.
"There was just enough info as the night continued to believe that, yes indeed, this could be a real event where someone is trying to attack us," Chief Jacobs said.
The chief believes the incident served as an important training exercise for gathered authorities, who received a first-hand lesson on what to do -- and what not to do -- if an actual attack takes place in the area.
"I was standing right outside headquarters discussing what was going on with some on-scene commanders, [when] the fire department walked up and said, 'You need to get out of here,'" Chief Jacobs said while describing a command post that was set up in a dangerous area around the building.
"We needed to back up in case there was a secondary device. They described where we needed to go, and that's where we went."
The building, as well as nearby areas, were evacuated during the investigation into the explosion, and several streets were closed in the area.
The department's response will have a long-lasting impact on those involved, according to Jacobs, who believes her officers rose the occasion while dealing with an unfamiliar situation.
"I truly believed we learned an awful lot from it, but we also performed very well that night," she said.