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Local

Police search Chicago-bound bus in Minooka after passenger makes bomb threat

Tour type bus stopped by Minooka and Illinois state police at Minooka exit 122 from Interstate 80.
Tour type bus stopped by Minooka and Illinois state police at Minooka exit 122 from Interstate 80.

 

MINOOKA - Illinois State Police and local emergency crews stopped a Chicago-bound bus Wednesday night in Minooka after a passenger threatened to blow it up.
Police responded around 9:30 p.m. Wednesday to Interstate 80 eastbound near Ridge Road in Minooka for a reported bomb threat, according to a news release from the Illinois State Police.
A person, whose name has not yet been released, was traveling Wednesday night on a charter bus on I-80 to Chicago when the individual threatened to blow up the bus, according to the release. The bus pulled over on the ramp to Ridge Road in Minooka, and state troopers and local emergency crews secured the scene, including approximately 10 Illinois State Police and two Minooka Squad Cars.
Christine Young, who was a passenger on the bus, said via text messages on Thursday that when they were pulled over that those sitting around her in the middle of the bus and closer to the front had no idea what was going on.
"People in the back might have known but nobody would say anything when the police were demanding to know what was going on," Young said. "The police used the bullhorn to tell the bus driver to come off with her hands up."
Young said she was very afraid.
"All roads are blocked," Don McKinney, Minooka resident who was at a nearby gas station Wednesday night, said in a text.
"They are not letting anyone near the exit from either direction on Ridge Road," McKinney said
Young said that after the bus driver was off for a while, one man decided he was going to get off as well. He was on his phone and didn't act like it was a big deal, she said.
"When he came out there were about five officers aiming their guns at him ordering him to put his hands up and tell them his name," Young said. "It didn't seem like he was reacting quickly enough for the (police) because he was on his phone and I was afraid they were going to shoot him."
She said later when she went to use the bathroom she learned from a police officer that there was a bomb threat but otherwise she would not have known.
"They just told us that someone called the police because she felt threatened." Young said. They were looking for the person who made the call and I don't think they found her."
Minooka Police chief Justin Meyer previously said it was a state case related to a bomb threat.
The individual was taken into custody and transported to Morris hospital for an evaluation.
No injuries were reported in relation to the incident, and no weapons or explosives were found on the vehicle. After police conducted a search, the bus was allowed to continue on its way to Chicago.
Young said that despite the scare, as she was traveling on personal business she would ride the bus again.
"I would travel by bus again though," she said. "I think the same thing could have happened on the train or whatever."
An investigation is ongoing.
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