Employees were allowed back into the Manatee County Judicial Center, the Manatee County Historic Courthouse and Manatee County government administration building in downtown Bradenton after a bomb threat forced their evacuation Monday afternoon.

The all-clear was given at 2: 40 p.m., but the public was still not being allowed back in.

At 12:32 p.m., the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office received the threatening call.

“Some guy called in anonymously that a bomb was going to go off in the courthouse in two hours, didn’t specify which building,” sheriff’s office spokesman Randy Warren said.

As a result, both courthouses were evacuated, as well as the county administration building across the street, as a precaution.

Deputies, including from the sheriff’s office bomb squad, worked to clear the buildings and surrounding complex. The entire perimeter was surrounded with more than 20 deputies as K-9’s and their handlers could be seen checking the grounds.

Employees and visitors to the buildings were being kept across the street along Old Main Street..

Traffic was allowed to keep moving along Manatee Avenue West.

Jessica De Leon has been covering crime, courts and law enforcement for the Bradenton Herald since 2013. She has won numerous awards for her coverage including the Florida Press Club’s Lucy Morgan Award for In-Depth Reporting in 2016 for her coverage into the death of 11-year-old Janiya Thomas.





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