By Glenn Collins
Thursday, March 8, 2012 | 6:33 PM
(DOUBLE SPRINGS) – An explosive device was discovered around 2 PM Thursday amongst evidence recovered by the Winston County Sheriff's Office in a weekend raid, Sheriff Rick Harris said.
The Winston County Courthouse and its perimeter were immediately evacuated and within the hour streets around Double Springs were closed. The Jefferson County Sheriff's Office Explosive Ordnance Disposal Unit removed the device to behind the courthouse and detonated it shortly before 6 PM. The “All clear” was then given. Law enforcement from around the area responded, including police departments in the county, as well as Jefferson and Walker county sheriffs' deputies, Jasper Police, State Troopers, State Fire Marshals, and the ATF.
Harris said the device was “a PVC pipe that had frag around it, some BB's and nails.” It was inside of a toolbox that was recovered in a weekend raid in Natural Bridge. According to Harris, some of the victims had come to his office to identify their property and that is when the device was discovered.
The Courthouse will re-open Friday as normal. County Commissioner David Cummings said, “The Sheriff did an excellent job handling the situation.”