HOOKSETT — Investigators in Hooksett are exploring a potential connection between two separate bomb hoaxes phoned in within five minutes of one another involving pharmacies two towns apart.
Around 6:35 p.m. Wednesday, the business line at the CVS Pharmacy at 10 Whitehall Road in Hooksett received a call claiming there was an explosive device in the building. Roughly five minutes later, the CVS at 48 E. Broadway in Derry received a similar threat.
“At this point, whether the Derry incident and our incident are connected is unknown at this time,” said Hooksett police Chief Peter Bartlett. “It would seem to be an extraordinary coincidence if these situations weren’t related, so we’re looking into the Derry incident and any other recent bomb threats to see if there is a connection.
“It’s an ongoing investigation, and we’re exploring all possible angles, interviewing the employee who received the phone call. ... Right now, we’re trying to determine where the call came from,” he said.
Investigators are working with CVS officials to check phone records and explore various sources of the threats, said Bartlett.
“We’re using any investigative techniques in our capacity,” he said. “To my knowledge, this is the first incident of a bomb threat occurring in Hooksett since I’ve been here the last year and a half.”
Both the Hooksett and Derry pharmacies were evacuated, and traffic was blocked on nearby roads while the New Hampshire State Police Explosives Disposal Unit searched the buildings. No explosives were found, and the stores and surrounding areas were reopened.
The FBI has been contacted to look into the matter, which Hooksett police Sgt. James Bradley said remains under investigation at the local level as well.
“Right now, we have no suspects,” said Bartlett, “but we’re hoping if anyone has any information relative to these calls or if they hear anything, we encourage them to contact Hooksett Police (at 624-1560).”
Tips may also be offered to Derry Police at 432-6111.