NEW ORLEANS -- A bomb squad detonated an unattended suitcase in a Mercedes-Benz Superdome garage Wednesday night, though officials say the "suspicious package" had only paper inside.
A SWAT robot detonated the suitcase around 11:30 p.m., but NOPD spokesman Officer Garry Flot said police learned after the detonation that there were only miscellaneous pieces of paper inside.
A security guard had found the suitcase inside of a parking lot.
The discovery forced the evacuation of part of the Superdome and shut down traffic on Poydras Street from Lasalle to Clara streets.
Superdome officials say it was a precautionary measures in light of the Boston bombings earlier this week.
“It's really frightening at this point in time," said bystander Vivian Boykin. "It feels like we can’t live in a world where we can't go out in public or suspicion over an unattended package.”
Vivian Boykin stopped to take pictures of the Superdome, only to discover New Orleans police and the firefighters on the scene.
Police say just before 7 p.m. a security guard discovered a roller suitcase sitting abandoned in the parking lot.
Less than two hours later, the bomb squad was called in with a robot to check out the package.
Dennis Stump just returned home after running the Boston Marathon. He never finished the race because of the bombings. He and his wife parked their car across the street from the Superdome after going to an event downtown. The runner is shocked to hear about another potential threat right in New Orleans.