Potential pipe bomb found at Freeborn Co. Government Center leads to evacuation

Police lights generic. (FOX 9)

The Freeborn County Government Center was evacuated Friday after a possible pipe bomb was found. 

According to the Freeborn County Sheriff's Office, just after 3 p.m. the building was evacuated after the device was found in a gun lock box. The box was removed from a man's car who had been arrested by Albert Lea police on traffic-related charges. 

The box was then taken to the Freeborn County Government Center and was opened. Authorities say inside the box there was what appeared to be a pipe bomb. 

Around 6:30 p.m., the St. Paul Bomb Squad arrived and removed the device from the building, law enforcement said. Employees returned to the building by about 6:45 p.m. and the building is currently open for regular use.

911 calls for Freeborn County were rerouted to Mower County during the evacuation. 

The Albert Lea Police Department is investigating the incident.