VISTA, Calif. -- A bogus bomb threat targeting a congressman's North County office prompted authorities to evacuate the building and close the frontage road for about three hours Thursday while determining that the area was safe, authorities reported.
One of the lawmaker's staffers received the threat by telephone shortly after 1 p.m., according to Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Vista.
"During this call, a staff member was told that something had been left outside that would explode,'' Issa said in a statement. "My district office staff immediately contacted the San Diego County Sheriff's (Department) and was thereafter evacuated from the office along with other occupants of the building.''
Deputies found a plastic bottle containing some kind of liquid outside the complex in the 1800 block of Thibodo Road, sheriff's Lt. Jim Nolan said.
Authorities cleared everyone out of the area, shut down a stretch of the street and called in a bomb squad, which searched the buildings and surrounding grounds with a service dog.
About 4:30 p.m., the ordnance team determined that the bottle posed no threat, according to Nolan. Investigators thought the liquid inside it might have been urine, the lieutenant said.
It was unclear who made the threat and left the container outside the congressman's office. Prior to the bomb scare, the complex had been the site of a demonstration by "individuals associated with MoveOn.org and Occupy North County, as well as individuals participating in a counter-protest,'' according to Issa.
It was unclear, however, if any of those people might have been involved in the bomb threat.