Police say Cumberland bomb situation was just "a misunderstanding"
by Lindsay Field
May 24, 2013 12:00 AM | 5134 views | 27 27 comments | 12 12 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Cobb police search vehicles at the Cumberland Festival shopping center Wednesday in response to a reported bomb threat.

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Staff/
Laura Moon
Cobb police search vehicles at the Cumberland Festival shopping center Wednesday in response to a reported bomb threat.
Staff/ Laura Moon
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CUMBERLAND — After calling in the Cobb County Bomb Squad, closing down a portion of Cobb Parkway for nearly two hours and evacuating around 20 stores, a suspected bomb threat at an AT&T store resulted in no arrests and appears to have been based on a complete misunderstanding.

Ross Feingold, 37, of Atlanta went into the store in the Cumberland Festival shopping center and started a conversation with another customer there.

Cobb Police Sgt. Dana Pierce said Feingold was telling this other person about another incident or situation involving “explosives” or a “bomb.”

A third party, another male customer, overheard the conversation.

“And the next thing you know he’s running to management,” Pierce said.

That third party relayed his concerns to the AT&T store manager, who then called 911.

Within minutes, a massive police presence descended on the shopping plaza.

And Feingold was suddenly looking down the barrels of the guns of at least three police officers outside the store front.

“It is a sign of the times, of how sensitive people are to national and world events,” Pierce said.

The county police called in a bomb squad, closed the road in front of the shopping center and evacuated everyone in the area’s retail shops.

“They actually confronted him, made him put everything down, including a briefcase, which ultimately had a laptop computer in it, and he was detained,” Pierce said.

The briefcase also contained personal documents, including a letter from Feingold’s late grandfather, Feingold said in an interview with WSB-TV.

Cobb County police dogs sniffed the scene and bomb squad officers blew up the briefcase and its contents in the corner of the shopping center. The highway and stores were reopened around 5:45 p.m.

Feingold, the person who accused him and AT&T store managers were all taken in for questioning by Cobb Police. But, ultimately, there were no charges brought against the man and police released him.

“The accused makes no bones about what he said and we had no reason to believe what he said was what the other person thought he said,” Pierce said. “The fact is, he did not, as far as what we know, mention anything to the degree that it was assumed, but it did initiate a response by Cobb Police.”

Pierce could not say if the man’s belongings will be paid for or restored and could not give the details of the 911 call.

“I don’t know (who would be responsible),” Pierce said. “Is it the person who wrongly reported it or the police? And I really don’t know. Nobody I asked seemed to have that answer today.”
Comments
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Okie Dawn
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June 07, 2013
Remember what happens when we assume? We make an a__ out of u and me. My grandmother and mother drilled that into us growing up. This person was eavesdropping, made an assumption and caused that entire area to close down, total loss of income for the businesses, loss of dignity for Mr. Feingold, and the loss of personal property and irreplaceable family documents. Right up there with children being kicked out of school for pointing their fingers or saying the word "gun". Oh, don't forget the breakfast pastry gun incident. Come on, people, get a grip!
anonymous
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May 28, 2013
Cobb Police Sgt. Dana Pierce said Feingold was telling this other person about another incident or situation involving “explosives” or a “bomb.” This about says it all. "was telling this other person about ANOTHER incident.........." not THIS incident. If I say Cobb Police BOMBED on this one, do I get arrested?

non sequuter
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June 05, 2013
Pierce had the advantage of reporting the findings after everyone was interviewed. The police were acting on the info they had at the time. The cobb bomb squad has been on three times as many calls since the boston bombing. If you remember the bombs were concealed in a backpack. You can be cute and cheeky and say what you want but I'd rather be safe than sorry.
surrounded by idiots
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May 25, 2013
Was no one watching the news when there was a bombing in Boston? So the police are supposed to just sit back and wait and see if a suspected bomb explodes? Then everyone will be crying, "where were the police? Why didn't they do anything?" You people are ridiculous.
also kashalfa
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May 28, 2013
So I can be overhead saying, "My latest idea bombed" or "Did you hear about the bombing in Boston" or that "movie was a bomb" and I get my laptop blown up? Let's hear the 911 tape before making judgements.
West Cobb Farmer
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May 24, 2013
Watching the escapades of the Cobb County Police is like watching new episodes of the "Andy Griffith Show". From what we read and see in the news there is no shortage of Barneys, Gomers and Goobers. We just don't have a level headed, common sensed sheriff to make sure they keep their bullet in their pocket.
non sequuter
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June 05, 2013
There's plenty of property for sale in the surrounding metro counties cletus.
Brother Thomas
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May 24, 2013
Yawn...
Bombed out
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May 24, 2013
Next time police is deling with a possible "bomb"

backpack problem, have the owner of the backpack open it.

Don't spend 2.5 hours closing down a whole road and restaurant area during during rush hour. For something which could have been handled in 10 minutes. Doubt any backpack owner would agee to open the backpack if there was a bomb inside.

Wow, the world is going nuts.
non sequuter
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June 05, 2013
so wait, let the person reach into his back pack that might have a bomb in it? Brilliant! we can use you on the bomb squad. Apply immediately!!
Watcher...
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May 24, 2013
Either AT&T, it's Customer, or the Cobb Police must replace Mr. Feingold's items that were destroyed.

I also suggest that AT&T, it's Customer, and Cobb Police apologize to Mr. Feingold! Oh, stupid me, Cobb Police don't apologize. The word "apology" is not in their vocabulary.

"Pierce could not say if the man’s belongings will be paid for or restored and could not give the details of the 911 call."

Could not or would not? I want to see the 911 call transcript. Better yet, I want to hear the audio of the 911 call.

Finally, the closing of Cobb Parkway, for nearly two hours, was just a little over the top!

Andrew M
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May 24, 2013
i would soo make the Cobb PD and the idiot who started the whole thing replace my laptop, the briefcase and then just for the grief of the lost personal letters of a late relative, well i dont know what i would do with that portion... but it would be very un-ending
Diamond Jim
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May 24, 2013
I hope the guy sues both the perpetrator AND the Cobb Co. P.D. This is just outrageous!! Probably have to go outside the county to find a lawyer who will handle it for him--the candy-asses here in Cobb are too much part of the good old boy system to buck the establishment--but he should absolutely push it to the hilt!
Cobb Mom
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May 24, 2013
This is so different from the initial report, and very fishy all around. Ross Feingold appears to have an arrest record, and did not come across as credible in the WSB story. I'm amazed that he was taken into custody the night this happened, but not charged. This was a huge mess for commuters and the nearby businesses.
Watcher...
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May 24, 2013
Feingold was VERY credible in the WSB-TV report.

Thank goodness for this good follow up reporting by the MDJ!
thank goodness
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May 24, 2013
I am thankful to know that it was a mistake and not a real terrorist problem. Thanks to the alert citizen and to the wonderful police. Just consider what it would have been if the opposite had been true, the police didn't come, etc. There is no blame in this case. It is the new normal for how we have to live.
Gary Blair
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May 24, 2013
Ahh either a troll or one of my fellow americans who i am ashamed to call a fellow american. You don't deserve the freedoms those who are being celebrated this weekend gave you.
Watcher...
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May 24, 2013
I would guess that "Cobb Mom" and "thank goodness" are both closely associated with Cobb PD.
Gary balir
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May 24, 2013
I would sue the hell out of the panicky individual. Never letting up till he felt just like i did with all the guns pointed at me.
Robert Hand
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May 24, 2013
Good Grief---blew up the mans lap top--people are idiots. Police overreact to everything.
Eunice Stone
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May 24, 2013
They got away with it again this time but we will get the terrorists one of these days when they so callously discuss their plans out loud in English at the AT and T store or the Waffle House!
C. Smith
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May 24, 2013
Betcha this was a feeble attempt to get national headlines for the CCPD.
anonymous
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May 24, 2013
I had an incident where there was absolutely no doubt to a thinking individual that I had been robbed by a maintenance worker in Cobb County. Cobb County Police were dispatched and they told me there was no reason to investigate this person that robbed me, even though I told them to go look for Shoo Fly Pie ice cream in the accused's freezer and to also look for my phone that I accurately described. They found both and told me they found both. The man I was accusing was in his vehicle and also stole my jewelry box that contained my World War II Veteran Dad's, who was a Prisoner of War, handmade calendar on a hankie while he was a Prisoner of War with the days x'd off in pencil that he somehow kept hidden, which would be worth millions today and would be of astonishing value to history. Even though Cobb County Police found the odd ice cream and my phone in the accused's residence, they let the man sit in his car with it and told me they didn't have sufficient evidence to search the car. Hankie and history lost forever, most likely in a landfill, that I would have denoted to a World War II museum. Never mind what else that was in the box.
Saenera and
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May 24, 2013
911 calls are public record. Why can't the details be released?
Justice Maybe
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May 24, 2013
I hope this man sues to the fullest extent he can sue.
Heywood PACTCDa
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May 24, 2013
I can tell you all about Cobb County Police over-reacting and making a victim out of somebody, especially the young ones that are trying to make a name for themselves. Be very aware of the young ones that will turn things around to make you the criminal. I know all about it. I, personally, was treated like a victim in my own home after seeking their assistance. I called for assistance for my daughter in another city, and they came to my house and even went upstairs in my home when I had called only for assistance for my daughter in another part of town. One of them even told me that I should have called 911 for Alpharetta instead of calling the 911 that I called for assistance. I will never forget that I asked what 911 should I have called and the total absolute dumb look on his face as he stood guard at my front door while another officer went upstairs in my home, looking for what, I will never know. I called for an allergic reaction my daughter called me about and gave them the address of my daughter. No matter what they thought. They did not have the right to explore my home and to keep me in my house with a man with a gun at my front door.
anonymous
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May 24, 2013
The report on this story yesterday was very different: A customer was irrate over AT&T transaction and ran out of the store hollering "I have a bomb"... After two of these traffic shutdowns in a week. 99.9% of time no bomb. There has to be better way to deal with traffic shutdowns in a bomb scare. Maybe police could shoot the breafcase in open space without all the hullabaloo.
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