Suspiciously Close, Yet So Far Away… (UPDATED)

An alert citizen who called 911 to report a suspicious man dropping a hand grenade-looking item into a public trash compactor downtown got it right…almost.

Tonight at approximately 6:39 p.m. a witness called 911 to report a man dressed in all black clothing dropping what appeared to be a shiny black “pineapple-style” hand grenade into a public trash compactor in the 1300 block of 3rd Avenue.  Patrol officers and Arson/Bomb Squad detectives responded to the scene and subsequently shut down the street to all traffic while they investigated further.

Upon further examination, Arson/Bomb Squad detectives were able to determine that the suspicious item was completely harmless, though it was ominous looking from a distance.

The item in question turned out to be a bottle of Viktor & Rolf “Spicebomb” men’s cologne (which looks similar to a “pineapple-style” hand grenade).  The item will be submitted into evidence for further forensic analysis.

The street was re-opened approximately two hours after the incident started.

The suspect remains at large.  He is described as a white male with shoulder-length gray/blond hair, last seen wearing all black clothing and carrying a bright green trash bag.

Anyone with information about this incident or who may know the identity or whereabouts of the suspect is asked to call 911 or Seattle Police and refer to this incident.  Anonymous tips are welcome.

This remains an active and on-going Arson/Bomb Squad investigation.

Update: Police are not searching for the man who left the bottle of cologne in the garbage.

After initially receiving a report that the man had left a suspicious item in the trash, police began searching for him to question him about the then-unidentified item. After officers discovered the man had simply tossed out a bottle of cologne, they stopped searching for him.