MCALESTER, Okla. - An anthrax scare in Pittsburg County prompted the evacuation of the courthouse Friday morning.
According to Sheriff Joel Kerns, a 911 call was made at 8:19 a.m. reporting a package containing anthrax was dropped off at the courthouse in McAlester.
Taking precautionary measures, authorities immediately evacuated the building and did an initial sweep. A second inspection by a Muskogee County Hazmat crew yielded no physical evidence of anthrax.
Air samples were taken and are being processed to ensure the air quality is acceptable.
The courthouse will remain closed for the remainder of the day and will reopen Monday morning.
Hundreds of people were inside the building when it was evacuated. Early elections were taking place and the court had a number of items on the docket.
Voting has been moved to offices adjacent to the courthouse.
This is the second such incident in recent weeks. Kerns say a similar search was carried out just weeks ago after a bomb scare.