Suspicious package containing ‘Journey’ cassette tape sent to Duke Energy in North Carolina

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

(File photo)

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A small manila envelope with handwriting on it, addressed to Duke Energy, is under investigation in Charlotte, according to WSOC.

Employees found the package at the Duke Energy building at 400 South Tryon Street.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg police called in bomb-sniffing dogs to survey the scene, as well as a bomb-sniffing robot.

The investigation prompted police to close part of Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard.

That package, however, contained a “Journey” cassette tape, police told WSOC.

It’s unclear why the sender mailed the electric company a “Journey” cassette tape.

The discovery sparked concern following a week of suspicious packages containing explosive sent to high-profile Democrats including former President Barack Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Cesar Sayoc, 56, of Aventura, Florida, faces charges related to those packages.

He once lived in North Carolina and was arrested in 2002 after Miami police said he threatened to bomb a Florida power company, saying “it would be worse than September 11th.”

Man charged sending explosives

On Friday,  Sayoc was arrested in connection with packages containing suspected explosives sent to high-profile Democrats.

Sayoc faces five federal crimes, and, if convicted of these crimes, he faces up to 58 years in prison, Attorney General Jeff Sessions said during a Friday press conference.

Those crimes include interstate transportation of explosives, illegal mailing of an explosive, threats against a former president and certain other person and assault against current and former operatives.

Those charges could change and expand as investigation proceeds.

History in North Carolina

FOX8 has obtained yearbook photos of the suspect in the mail bomb case at Brevard College in North Carolina in the early 1980s.

Two images show Cesar Sayoc in a 1981 yearbook from the school in Brevard.

Sayoc attended Brevard College in the fall of 1980 for three semesters, a spokeswoman from the college confirmed. He did not graduate from Brevard College, she said.

WSOC reported a man with the same name and same birth date lived in Mecklenburg County, court records confirm.

Public records showed Sayoc had an address in south Charlotte in the year 2000, WCNC reports.

What appears to be Sayoc’s LinkedIn account says he attended both UNC-Charlotte and Brevard College in western North Carolina. Although the profile mentions High Point University, the school said he never attended HPU.

WBTV in Charlotte tweeted that former UNC Charlotte Soccer Coach Bob Warming said Sayoc was a walk-on player for the 49ers in 1983.

Criminal history

Sayoc’s past is marked by encounters with law enforcement, including an arrest for threatening a Florida power company.

Court records show he had been arrested at least nine times, mostly in Florida, for accusations of grand theft, battery, fraud, drug possession and probation violations.

In 2002, he was arrested after Miami police said he threatened to bomb a power company, saying “it would be worse than September 11th.”

“The defendant contacted a rep (from) Florida Power and Light Co. … by telephone and threatened to blow up FPL,” a Miami Police Department report about the incident said.

The caller “threatened to blow up the building if FP&L turned off his light,” the report said.

He pleaded guilty to the offense, records show, and was sentenced to one year of probation.

In 2014, he was arrested and later pleaded guilty to stealing copper pipes at a Home Depot, records show.

Who got what, when: A timeline of when the bombs were found

A number of crude explosive devices have been sent since last Monday to former President Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, other top political figures and CNN’s New York offices.

Here is a timeline:

Monday, Oct. 29

Another package that appears identical to the others was sent to CNN’s worldwide headquarters in Atlanta, but it was intercepted Monday at an off-site screening facility.

Friday, Oct. 26

Cesar Sayoc, 56, was arrested in connection with the suspicious packages, law enforcement sources told CNN. Sayoc, who has an Aventura, Florida, address, was arrested at a business in nearby Plantation, Florida.

The sources said Sayoc had a criminal history and also had ties to New York. Footage showed officials in Plantation towing away a van with stickers that featured images of President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence.

There was also a sticker that said “CNN Sucks.”

Earlier Friday the FBI confirmed an 11th package, addressed to Democratic Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey, had been recovered in Florida. Sources previously told CNN that investigators believed some of the packages might have originated in Florida and that investigators were there, chasing down leads.

The package was addressed to Booker’s office in Camden, New Jersey, sources said.

Law enforcement officials told CNN the package was found Thursday night.

The New York Police Department also tweeted Friday morning that it was investigating a suspicious package, and a law enforcement official told CNN the package was at a postal facility on West 52nd Street in New York.

The 12th package, which was similar to the others, was addressed to both the former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper and to CNN, according to a law enforcement official.

Authorities also began investigating a suspicious package in Sacramento, California, addressed to Democratic Sen. Kamala Harris, according to a law enforcement official.

Another law enforcement source told CNN authorities were investigating a suspicious package intercepted in Burlingame, California, that was addressed to billionaire Tom Steyer, an outspoken Trump critic.

Thursday, Oct. 25

Authorities responded early Thursday to a suspicious package that had been sent to actor-director Robert De Niro at a building in Lower Manhattan’s Tribeca neighborhood. The address, 375 Greenwich St., matches that of the Tribeca Film Center. De Niro, the co-founder of the Tribeca Film Festival, is a vocal critic of Trump.

The package had been received in the general mailroom on Wednesday, according to a law enforcement official. A retired police officer discovered it and left it in his office.

After seeing news reports, he realized it was similar to other packages in the news and called police at about 4 a.m. on Thursday, according to the official.

The package was removed from the building about 7 a.m.

Authorities also located two suspicious packages addressed to former Vice President Joe Biden at post offices in Delaware, a law enforcement official said. The packages were similar to others discovered this week and contained potential explosive devices.

At least one of them was misaddressed and returned to sender, two law enforcement sources told CNN.

Wednesday, Oct. 24

A suspicious package was sent to the Florida office of Democratic Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz on Wednesday morning. It was intended for former US Attorney General Eric Holder but had the wrong address. The package was returned to the Democratic congresswoman because her office was the return label on the package, two law enforcement sources said.

CNN’s New York bureau in the Time Warner Center was evacuated shortly after 10 a.m. after the discovery of a package containing a bomb, said law enforcement officials. They said the package was addressed to former CIA Director John Brennan.

A suspicious package addressed to the Washington office of US Rep. Maxine Waters, D-California, was intercepted at a congressional mail-screening facility in Maryland, and a second package addressed to the congresswoman was found at a postal facility in Los Angeles. It matches the description of those sent to the other officials.

A package containing a possible explosive device intended for Obama was intercepted by the US Secret Service at a screening facility in Washington.

Tuesday, Oct. 23

A package containing a possible explosive device and intended for Clinton, the former secretary of state and first lady, was intercepted. It was discovered during routine mail screening procedures Tuesday evening, according to authorities.

Monday, Oct. 22

A suspicious package targeting billionaire investor and philanthropist George Soros was rendered safe in Bedford, New York, a law enforcement source told CNN. Bedford police said they received a call about 3:45 p.m. reporting a suspicious package found in a mailbox. The package appeared to be an explosive device, police said.


Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Trademark and Copyright 2021 Cable News Network, Inc., a Time Warner Company. All rights reserved.


get the app

My FOX8 News App

Follow FOX8 on Twitter