CLIFTON, N.J. (AP) — A terrified New Jersey thrift shop owner raced to get all her customers out when she said her husband discovered a blinking device that looked like a bomb vest amid a box of items they had purchased in a storage locker auction.
Police also played it safe, evacuating several blocks of downtown Clifton late Thursday and then detonating the device after placing it in a metal bomb disposal box in the middle of a street.
On Friday, police in this city 20 miles west of New York determined the vest was likely the work of Hollywood.
"All indications are that it was a movie prop," said Sgt Robert Bracken, a city detective.
Renee Dimitros, owner of New 4 U, said the device had all the makings of a real bomb— straps, wires, a timer, buttons and a light that began blinking.
She said her husband, Mike Hamadat, discovered the vest while he was sifting through the items he bought at the storage locker auction.
Dimitros said she told police the items came from Hollywood. She said the storage locker was owned by a man who worked on movies in Hollywood, and included movie props. She said he died last year.
When no one claims the contents of a locker, they are auctioned off.
Dimitros said when she realized it might be a bomb she rushed to get customers out of the store.
"I said hurry up, get out, get out, get out," Dimitros said. "This was a very terrible experience."
Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.