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Small explosive leads to NY building evacuation

BUFFALO — Authorities say someone set off a small explosive device inside a county office building in downtown Buffalo, forcing its evacuation but causing no injuries and little damage.

Erie County Sheriff’s Lt. Sean Simet said the homemade M-80-like explosive was detonated in a rear stairwell between the building’s fourth and fifth floors shortly before 10 a.m. Thursday, slightly damaging the drywall. The five-story building houses some offices of the sheriff’s department and the county Board of Elections.

The building was briefly evacuated while firefighters and police investigated.

Simet says the device contained explosive flash powder. It’s a felony to possess such an object.

The red brick building is accessible to the public and isn’t guarded.

The investigation into who set off the device continues.