All clear given after Times Square evacuated over suspicious package, police say

NEW YORK — Police on Thursday cleared Times Square amid a threat of a suspicious package before determining the area was safe only an hour later.

Detective Hubert Reyes told USA TODAY there was a 911 call shortly after noon Thursday for the area of West 47th Street and 7th Avenue, the location of the iconic New York landmark.

New York police gave an "all clear" by 1:15 p.m., saying, "the package in Times Square has been cleared and deemed to be not suspicious."

Police had warned the public to avoid the area on West 45 Street to 48 Street on Broadway to 7th Avenue in Manhattan.

Photos and videos shared on social media showed a portion of Times Square empty of the usual crowds of tourists as police and other emergency vehicles lined the streets.

The evacuation came at the same time police in Washington, D.C., were negotiating with a man who parked outside the Library of Congress building and claimed to have an explosive device.

There was no indication there was any link between the two events.

Although a common spot for visitors traveling to New York, Times Square has been the site of a number of recent shooting, which has prompted an increased police presence and stoked conversation around public safety amid the ongoing mayoral election.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Times Square evacuated after suspicious package found in NYC