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Hazmat officials investigated a suspicious substance that turned out to be...baby formula. (Stock photo) Shutterstock
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‘Unknown substance’ sickens Planned Parenthood employees, sparks evacuation: media hint at terrorism

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SARASOTA, FL, May 23, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) – Officials treated it as a potential terrorist attack. Hazmat officials decontaminated 42 people, a nearby school was placed on lockdown, and seven people were rushed to the hospital with severe respiratory symptoms this morning. But Florida police say all the problems were caused because a Planned Parenthood abortion facility "overpacked" its cleaning chemicals.

This morning, several people inside Planned Parenthood's Sarasota Health Center became ill, reporting difficulty breathing. At 10:45 this morning, Sarasota Police Department and fire department arrived on the scene.

They hosed chemicals off all 42 of the building's evacuees, transported seven people to Sarasota Memorial Health Care System for further care, and placed the Sarasota School of Arts and Sciences on lockdown while they probed the source of the airborne sickness.

All the illnesses occurred because Planned Parenthood “overpacked” chemicals, police told WSTP-TV.

Upon arrival, Hazmat officials investigated a suspicious powder on the abortion office's steps. Ironically, it turned out to be baby formula, which officials later said was apparently spilled during the evacuation, and was not related to the employees' sickness.

Officials dismissed any notion that Planned Parenthood had been targeted by pro-life demonstrators and said the investigation is closed.

Yet even after the cause of the illnesses had been determined, the media hinted at a potential domestic terrorist action.

"Planned Parenthood is a national target because of its role as the largest U.S. abortion provider," the world's largest news agency, the Associated Press, reported this afternoon. "Last year, edited videos were released purporting to show Planned Parenthood selling fetal tissue for profit. The organization has denied the allegation."

A less objective outlet, Cosmopolitan, wrote, “Planned Parenthood, which provides reproductive health care [abortion] and family planning services [sometimes abortifacient contraception], has been a longtime target for anti-abortion extremists.”

Planned Parenthood of Southwest and Central Florida said in a statement that none of the individuals taken to the hospital were women seeking abortions at the facility, which performs abortions through 15 weeks and 6 days.

“At Planned Parenthood our top priority is the safety of our patients and staff,” the abortion affiliate said, adding the group “has a very strong safety record.”

Officials have not yet said whether Planned Parenthood's handling of chemical substances violated the state health code or other applicable laws. 

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