Houston Premium Outlet Mall reopened after evacuation

By Bill Spencer - Investigative Reporter

CYPRESS, Texas - Hundreds of outlet shoppers were forced out of the Houston Premium Outlets Mall and into the parking lots because of a bomb threat Sunday afternoon.

At approximately 4:30 p.m., a suspicious-looking woman was seen dropping a hard-sided suitcase in a section of the mall and leaving it there.

Deputies with the Harris County Sheriff's Office, Precinct 4 constables, firefighters and ambulances were sent to the mall to evacuate the entire shopping center.

Tensions increased when a bomb sniffing dog investigating the suitcase indicated to his handler that he had found something -- a suspicious scent, what the cops call "a hit."

The bomb squad moved in, along with The Harris County High Risk Operations Unit, and eventually the suspicious suitcase was opened.

Investigators found nothing explosive or dangerous inside. The evacuation of the mall was called off and shoppers and mall employees, who had been waiting outside in the parking lots, were allowed to go back inside or leave the mall altogether.

The final result was that there were no injuries, no threat and no danger at the outlet mall.

The Houston Premium Outlets Mall is expected to open at regular hours Monday morning.

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