WAYNE, NJ – Monday night, Anthony R Vigilante approached Willowbrook Mall security guards and informed them of a series of bombs set to explode in the mall. Vigilante will now face charges for his actions.
Hundreds of shoppers raced for their lives to exit the Willowbrook Mall after a man approached the security guards claiming he found a note stating a series of bombs were set to explode. The Passaic County Sheriff's Bomb Squad did an initial cursory K-9 sweep of the evacuated mall and found nothing after the man approached a security guard around 8:30 p.m., a law enforcement source said.
"We're going to arrest him, I have no doubt about that. This individual caused a lot of panic. You just can't do that," said Wayne Police Captain Laurence W. Martin.
Through the panic and the chaos, local municipalities were able to effectively work together and safely clear the area. "The Sheriff's Office has a well trained and seasoned emergency response function. Through it's Bomb Squad and K9 Units, the agency responds to bomb threats and other emergencies around the clock,” said Sheriff Richard H. Berdnik.
Anthony R Vigilante, 56, was charged with creating false public alarm and widespread panic.