An Alaska ferry in Juneau was evacuated early Wednesday (2-10-21) after an unticketed Juneau man drove his blue Toyota Tundra pickup on board and allegedly threatened crew members.
The LeConte was loading around 6:15 a.m. at the Auke Bay terminal for a round-trip sailing to Pelican. That’s when a man drove around the line of cars and boarded the vessel and told crew members he was armed and mentioned a bomb.
“The truck bypassed the purser without checking in and at high speeds, nearly colliding with another vehicle and container,” the state Department of Transportation said in a statement. It added the man began “muttering about bombs and firearms” while trying to climb back into his truck that he had seemingly locked.
“The comment was not a direct threat, nor did the man say he had a bomb, but it created a lot of concern with everyone on the vessel,” the Juneau Police Department said in a statement. “The man then stated that if the ferry employees didn’t back away, he would pull a gun on them. The man then reached into his jacket as though to grab a firearm.”
Coast Guard officials say they dispatched a 45-foot rescue boat and set up a 1,000-yard cordon around the ferry as a precaution.
“It was a security breach — he shouldn’t have been on the vessel,” Coast Guard spokesman Lt. Chad Coppin told CoastAlaska. “Our Coast Guard members actually swept the vessel and found no further credible threat. And so they secured the rest of the vessel.”
Juneau police say no bomb was found and the man claimed the whole thing had been a joke. He was identified as 39-year-old Adam Jason Bahr of Juneau. Court records show he faces a single misdemeanor charge of allegedly making threats.
The Alaska Department of Transportation says there were less than 10 ticketed passengers on board at the time. The LeConte’s sailing to Pelican — a village of less than 100 people on Chichagof Island — was canceled. It’s now scheduled to depart at 7 a.m. on Saturday, February 13.