Police: Trocadero Theatre bomb threat under investigation

Police, a bomb squad and the Department of Homeland Security investigated a bomb threat at the Trocadero Theatre in Chinatown Wednesday evening (Phillip Lucas / Daily News staff)

A threatening email suggesting that the Trocadero Theatre would be bombed prompted an investigation by the police department, a bomb squad and the Department of Homeland Security Wednesday night.

Authorities said the threat was a hoax after police and a bomb-sniffing dog searched the building on Arch Street near 10th Wednesday evening and found nothing suspicious inside.

The scene was cleared around 7 p.m.

An anonymous email was sent to various news outlets, the police department and the theater around 5:40 p.m. announcing that a bomb was inside the building. A portion of the message read, "Not only is bomb there now i have weapons there that i will use to cause mass destruction tonight. good luck. you will need it."

At about 6 p.m., dispatchers called for police to cease all radio activity near the theater - which is standard protocol concerning bomb threats and suspicious packages, police said.

Lt. Raymond Evers, police spokesman, said the department is aware of the threat, and was conducting an investigation Wednesday evening. At 6:30 p.m., a bomb-sniffing dog was called into service.

The email was sent from an anonymous email service provider, which claims that it does not request users to submit identifying information such as their name or address, according to its website. The provider also claims that in an effort to ensure privacy, the service does not record the Internet Protocol addresses of its users.

As officials were preparing to leave the building Wednesday evening, Chief Inspector Joe Sullivan said police would work to aggressively pursue the person who sent the threatening email.

"They just cost the city of Philadelphia an awful lot of money," he said, adding that the police department takes bomb threats very seriously.

"Born of Chaos Record Showcase," is scheduled to begin at the theater at 8 p.m. Four thrash-metal rock bands are scheduled to perform at the show. They include Machines of Penalty, whose members are from South Jersey, March to Victory, of Lancaster, Anticosm, from Howell, N.J., and Chinga, of Allentown.