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Police: Explosive ‘hoax’ prompts evacuation of NYC mall

January 4, 2021 GMT
This photo, provided by the New York City Police Department, Monday, Jan.4, 2021, shows the hoax explosive device at a mall in the Queens borough of New York. A police spokesman said that an initial investigation showed there was no explosive device. "An investigation is underway into the hoax," NYPD Sergeant Edward Riley said in an emailed statement. (New York City Police Dept. via AP)
This photo, provided by the New York City Police Department, Monday, Jan.4, 2021, shows the hoax explosive device at a mall in the Queens borough of New York. A police spokesman said that an initial investigation showed there was no explosive device. "An investigation is underway into the hoax," NYPD Sergeant Edward Riley said in an emailed statement. (New York City Police Dept. via AP)
This photo, provided by the New York City Police Department, Monday, Jan.4, 2021, shows the hoax explosive device at a mall in the Queens borough of New York. A police spokesman said that an initial investigation showed there was no explosive device. "An investigation is underway into the hoax," NYPD Sergeant Edward Riley said in an emailed statement. (New York City Police Dept. via AP)
This photo, provided by the New York City Police Department, Monday, Jan.4, 2021, shows the hoax explosive device at a mall in the Queens borough of New York. A police spokesman said that an initial investigation showed there was no explosive device. "An investigation is underway into the hoax," NYPD Sergeant Edward Riley said in an emailed statement. (New York City Police Dept. via AP)
This photo, provided by the New York City Police Department, Monday, Jan.4, 2021, shows the hoax explosive device at a mall in the Queens borough of New York. A police spokesman said that an initial investigation showed there was no explosive device. "An investigation is underway into the hoax," NYPD Sergeant Edward Riley said in an emailed statement. (New York City Police Dept. via AP)

NEW YORK (AP) — A New York City mall was evacuated Monday morning after a hoax device made to look like an explosive was found in a vehicle parked on a ramp in a parking garage, police said.

John Miller, the NYPD’s deputy commissioner for counterterrorism, said police received a 911 call from the Queens Place Mall around 7:30 a.m. describing a vehicle with propane tanks and protruding wires.

Police tweeted a photo showing an aerosol-type can, a roll of duct tape, some wires and other items recovered from the vehicle, a black Tesla with Nevada license plate.

“The bomb squad has determined that this is a hoax device, which means in their judgment it was set up to appear to be a device,” Miller said.

A police spokesperson, Sgt. Edward Riley, said in an emailed statement that “an investigation is underway into the hoax.”

Police said they also found a husky in the trunk of the car. The dog appeared to be OK. The NYPD tweeted a photo of the pooch drinking water from a cup while being cared for by personnel from the department’s special operations unit.

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Police said the Tesla was found parked halfway up the garage’s circular ramp, positioned in the center of the roadway in a manner that prevented other vehicles from passing.

The car’s windows were obscured, making it difficult for passersby to readily discern what was inside, police said.

The NYPD tweeted that people should avoid the area while the matter was being investigated.