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NYPD Reopens Park Avenue After Mercedes Causes Bomb Scare

By Heather Grossmann | September 2, 2010 6:43pm | Updated on September 3, 2010 6:07am

By Dellla Hasselle

DNAinfo Reporter/Producer

MIDTOWN — The NYPD reopened Park Avenue Thursday afternoon after the bomb squad investigated a "suspicious" Mercedes Benz parked on the side of the road and declared the area safe, police said.

The black vehicle was seen parked at an odd angle at Park Avenue and East 51st Street. A police spokesman told NBC New York the Mercedes had been there since the morning and appeared to be weighed down in an unusual way.

The car was towed from the scene about 5 p.m.

Earlier, nearby buildings were evacuated, while workers in others were told to stay away from the windows.

Police kept Mohamed Ali, 26, away from the Halal cart he runs at the corner of Park Avenue and East 51st Street for a half hour, but the operator said he was just grateful no one was hurt.

Police closed the East side of Park Avenue up to East 57th Street Thursday due to the suspicious package.
Police closed the East side of Park Avenue up to East 57th Street Thursday due to the suspicious package.
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DNAinfo/Gabriela Resto-Montero

"I didn't care about the business," Ali said.

"I care about the safety, that's all I care about. Thank God nothing happened."

NYPD cars and other emergency service vehicles crowded the scene as the bomb squad robot, which is used to detonate suspicious packages, was brought in.

Traffic heading south on Park Avenue was entirely blocked from East 50th to East 57th streets, while traffic heading north on Park was only blocked off from East 50th to East 52nd streets.

The streets were reopened just after the car was towed.

Police remove the black Mercedes car believed to carry a suspicious package from Park Avenue Thursday.
Police remove the black Mercedes car believed to carry a suspicious package from Park Avenue Thursday.
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DNAinfo/Josh Williams
Police officers search the car believed to carry a suspicious package on Park Avenue and East 51st Street Thursday.
Police officers search the car believed to carry a suspicious package on Park Avenue and East 51st Street Thursday.
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DNAinfo/Josh Williams