BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) — Local and federal officials are investigating an incident that sent three bank employees to a local hospital as a precaution against possible exposure to an unknown substance.

The incident occurred Monday morning after the employees came in contact with flyers that were left in a night drop box, according to the Baton Rouge Fire Department (BRFD).

The three workers are employees of Investar Bank, which is located on Coursey Boulevard.

BRFD added that the suspicious flyers were delivered to “at least” five other businesses.

As a result, multiple businesses in the area evacuated around noon.

Photo by Baton Rouge Fire Department

Thomas Ruggles works near the bank. He told the FBI he found similar flyers close to his job. After reviewing the store’s security camera footage, he believes the vehicle and man pictured below may be responsible for the flyers.

Ruggles spoke with the FBI, but police have not confirmed this.

According to BRFD, the three workers who went to the hospital were cleared and their tests came back negative.

BRProud has also learned that the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) is taking the lead in the investigation.

“We were talking with our mail person… we see her everyday and we kind of just wanted to give her a heads up because we were concerned she might be walking up to a building, come across one of these and perhaps touch it and get hurt,” said Ruggles. “She said matter of fact we saw something look like that down the street. We wanted to look and didn’t want to just leave it there in case someone without knowledge touched it.”

FBI New Orleans provided the following statement:

“FBI New Orleans is aware of an ongoing incident in the vicinity of Coursey Blvd, Baton Rouge, LA, which we are working with the East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Office and other state and local partners. As always, we encourage the public to remain vigilant and to promptly report suspicious activities that could represent a threat to public safety. For more information, please contact the East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Office.” 

FBI New Orleans

This is a developing story.