WAYNE, N.J. -- Wayne police who charged a Morris County man with fabricating a story that he'd found a note saying bombs were placed throughout the Willowbrook Mall were searching for three men who they said jumped up on tables shouting "Black lives matter!" during Monday night's evacuation.
Anthony R Vigilante, 56, was charged with creating false public alarm and widespread panic after telling a mall security officer that he found a handwritten post-it note that "made threats of 'six bombs' placed throughout the mall, Capt. Laurence Martin said Tuesday morning.
Vigilante, of East Hanover, said he threw the note away, Martin said.
Wayne police orderd shoppers and employees removed following the 8:25 p.m. report.
During that time, officers "were met with disruptive behavior in the Food Court when three unidentified persons jumped up on tables screaming 'BLACK LIVES MATTER',” the captain said.
"This outburst was done to disrupt the orderly evacuation underway," he said. "[T]hese parties then fled with the evacuating crowd and currently remain unidentified."
Vigilante "experienced a medical episode while being interviewed and was removed from the mall under Wayne Police guard to Chilton Hospital by the Wayne Memorial First Aid Squad for evaluation" Martin said.
The Passaic County Sheriff’s Bomb Squad and K-9 units conducted a thorough search that was completed by midnight, and the mall "returned to normal operation," the captain said.
Detectives James Faber and Dave Collins eventually filed charges after interviewing Vigilante, who remained in custody ending a bail hearing in Superior Court in Paterson.
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