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Abate Elementary School put on alert after suspicious book bag is spotted

NIAGARA FALLS – A bomb scare that put the Harry F. Abate Elementary School on alert Monday morning was called “a misunderstanding.” The school had been put on notice after a suspicious book bag was found unattended in the Earl Brydges Library on Main Street, adjacent to the school.

Police Chief E. Bryan DalPorto said police found a “large kitchen knife” in the bag. An all clear signal was given to the school just before 11:30 a.m. DalPorto said the owner of the book bag went to the police station a few hours later and claimed his bag.

DalPorto said it was all a “misunderstanding” and no charges were filed.

Deputy School Superintendent Mark R. Laurrie said school officials, noting the nearby commotion, had the students “shelter in place” rather than evacuating the building. Students and staff went about their daily business, but students were not allowed to go outside until the all-clear signal was given. Laurrie said the school principal made a robocall to parents informing them that “everything was taken care of.”