Explosive package addressed to Sheriff Arpaio discovered in Flagstaff

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By Catherine Holland By Catherine Holland
By Andrew Michalscheck By Andrew Michalscheck

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. -- Investigators are trying to determine the source of a suspicious package that was addressed to Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio at his downtown Phoenix headquarters and intercepted in Flagstaff.

The Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office said a package containing an explosive device arrived at the Flagstaff Post Office on Route 66 Thursday afternoon. It had been picked up at about noon.

A postal worker who screened the package about three hours later knew something wasn't right. Andrew Rivas labeled it suspicious.

It's not clear exactly what piqued his interest.

"There are numerous postal inspectors that are trained to deal this and we take all these instances very, very serious, whether it's a real device, a hoax device, or just a threat," he said.

The package was X-rayed and an explosive device was found.

A bomb team was brought in and that device was neutralized.

Flagstaff police, the FBI, and U.S. Postal inspectors are investigating the case, and say they already have investigative leads.

Three MCSO deputies are also being sent to Flagstaff to assist with the investigation.

A controversial figure who proclaims himself "America's Toughest Sheriff," Arpaio is no stranger to receiving threats.

The sheriff is hosting previously scheduled news conference on an unrelated topic late Friday morning. It's possible he'll address the incident at that time.

Arpaio, 80, became Maricopa County's sheriff on Jan. 1, 1993.