SPOKANE, Wash. -- The police response to an anthrax scare at the Davenport Hotel Sunday could cost thousands of dollars.
The call required a massive police and fire response but it turned out there was no threat to the public.
Prosecutors were ensuring the expenses attached to the false report of anthrax at the hotel were going to the right person.
Robert Malley was arrested in connection to the Davenport scare. In his first court appearance on Tuesday, Malley made seemingly unintelligible remarks. Court records showed authorities believe he dropped off an envelope with “anthrax” labeled on it near the Davenport Hotel. Officials said he was trying to get some attention from the FBI.
The FBI was not the only agency to respond to the Davenport on Sunday. In addition, there were eight police officers, six fire trucks and a Hazmat crew. A full City block was also shut down and the scare forced STA buses to be rerouted for two hours.
“We'd rather over-respond and have it be nothing than not [do so] and have people get hurt,” said deputy prosecutor Tony Hazel. “Anytime a public agency expends a number of resources on hoaxes, it's a waste of taxpayer resources.”
Prosecutors said they were working to force suspects to pay the bill for the resources.
“The law allows us to go after reasonable response costs for the resources used on any given situation,” said Hazel.
Prosecutors said suspects could only pay the bill if there was a conviction.