Pinellas County deputy resigns after sending toy bomb to colleague

Posted at 8:47 AM, Jan 09, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-09 09:58:28-05

LARGO, Fla. (AP) — A Florida sheriff's deputy has resigned after telling authorities he sent a toy bomb to a colleague as a joke.

Pinellas County Sheriff's officials said in an email that the building where the "bomb" arrived was evacuated Tuesday while a bomb squad from the Tampa Police Department checked everything out.

Once Sheriff Bob Gualtieri sent an agency wide all-clear message, 59-year-old Deputy James Piper told his supervisor he'd sent the package to 46-year-old Lt. Joseph Gerretz. Piper immediately resigned.

Gerretz was in his office when he received a package through inner-office mail. Inside the insulated box was a red cylinder-shaped object with wires protruding from it. A handwritten note said "Boom."

Gerretz notified officials of the potential threat and the building was evacuated.