Threat forces evacuations |

Threat forces evacuations

Two Garfield County Department of Social Services buildings were evacuated Tuesday after an elderly man reportedly made threats against people there.

Police would not reveal the nature of the threats or how police found out about them. DSS buildings in both Glenwood Springs and Rifle were evacuated around 4 p.m.

“We had a threat so we evacuated,” said Lynn Renick, assistant director of services at the Glenwood Springs facility on Blake Avenue. “Everybody evacuated very fast.”

In all, as many as 40 people were asked to leave the building in Glenwood. It is unknown how many people were evacuated from the Rifle facility. A Rifle police spokeswoman, however, said the Rifle DSS office evacuation was done as a precautionary measure without the help of Rifle police.

At least two officers were on hand behind the Glenwood DSS office to help clear out the building.

Glenwood Springs police declined to comment on the situation and Garfield County sheriff’s deputies did not respond to inquiries.

Meanwhile, law enforcement officials from throughout the area looked for the man’s sport utility vehicle, which was said to be headed west on Interstate 70 from the Edwards area, in an attempt to head him off before anything happened. According to unconfirmed reports, the man was extremely upset, heavily armed and headed toward Glenwood Springs.

Those reports indicated the man left the Edwards area around 3 p.m. and possibly made threats against police officers and employees of the DSS. The man reportedly possessed several firearms and possibly some explosives.

As of press time, police weren’t commenting on the incident, and the man’s whereabouts weren’t known.

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