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Baton Rouge, Louisiana
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White powder found at BR courthouse

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BATON ROUGE - Investigators said a letter containing a white powdery substance caused authorities to evacuate the third floor of the 19th Judicial District Courthouse in Baton Rouge.

Curt Monte with the Baton Rouge Fire Department said around 11 a.m. people in the mail room, which is on the third floor, found the suspicious letter and alerted authorities.

The third floor was evacuated and crews tested the substance for any one of several thousand potentially harmful substances.

"You have to use extra precaution," Monte said. "Our guys are highly trained with great equipment. They suited up, and went inside to test the substance."

The powder turned out to be harmless, and the all-clear was given around 12:30 p.m.

The FBI has now taken over the investigation, and the substance was sent to a lab in Shreveport to determine exactly what it was. 

There's no word on who sent the letter, or to whom it was addressed.

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