UPDATE: Cherry Point EOD cleared from Washington shopping center, suspect in custody

Published 10:13 am Thursday, January 11, 2024

The United States Marine Corps, Cherry Point EOD concluded operations at the Washington Corner Shopping Center (on John Small Avenue) after possible explosives were found on Wednesday night (Jan. 10).

The case is “very active” and future updates will be available when practical, the Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office shared.

The Washington Corner Shopping Center was evacuated on Wednesday after deputies with Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office searched a vehicle in the Food Lion parking lot and discovered what appeared to be possible explosives inside. Deputies immediately secured the area and requested assistance from Washington Police Department, Washington Fire/EMS and Beaufort County Emergency Services. Cherry Point DOD responded to the scene to further investigate the items, according to a press release from the sheriff’s office.

On Wednesday at around 6:45 p.m., an investigator with the sheriff’s office found a male slumped over in a vehicle in the Food Lion parking lot. While checking on the welfare of the occupant, the investigator saw drug paraphernalia in “plain view,” according to a press release from the sheriff’s office.  “Upon making contact with the subject, the investigator located a weapon, crystal methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia,” the press release explains. Further discovery uncovered possible explosives. The suspect in the incident was placed into custody. There is no known threat to the public.

Law enforcement cleared the scene at approximately 1:30 a.m. Thursday morning, Jan. 11.