APSO: Rouses in Gonzales reopens after suspicious package removed

PRAIRIEVILLE, LA (WAFB) - The Ascension Parish Sheriff's Office reported Rouses Supermarket on Airline Highway in Gonzales is now back open after a suspicious package was removed.

Authorities said they were contacted after the package was left by the front door.

Officials said the store was evacuated as a precaution initially, but is now safe and reopened for business.

According to Rouses, a worker found a small suspicious package around 11 a.m. and notified a manager. Officials said because no one could determine why the package was near the front door of the store or where it had come from, the manager called the sheriff's office.

"We take every precaution to provide the safest working and shopping experience for our team members and customers," Donny Rouse, CEO, said in a written release. "I want to personally thank our team members for their quick reactions. I also want to thank our great and loyal customers for their cooperation and understanding that safety and security were our number one priority. We appreciate and thank Gonzales' first responders, including the Louisiana State Police and the Ascension Parish Sheriff's Department, especially Chief Deputy Bobby Webre. They did an excellent job."

The store reported Louisiana State Police Emergency Services Unit (ESU) was called in to investigate after APSO evacuated the store and closed the parking lot. Officials said LSP detectives determined there was concern with the package and used a "high-pressured water device" to open it.

According to Rouses, the contents of the package were then removed and the store reopened around 1:30 p.m. The store did not state what was inside the package.

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