By Brian Messenger
---- — HAVERHILL — A bomb squad was called in to remove a World War II-era mortar from inside a Greenlawn Avenue home early last night after it was discovered by relatives cleaning the property.
Haverhill police Sgt. John Arahovites said the mortar was found by relatives cleaning out the house at 67 Greenlawn Avenue. He said the relatives placed the mortar in a cast-iron bathtub and called police around 3:30 p.m.
Residents in neighboring homes were evacuated for several hours. Greenlawn Avenue is located off Washington Street near Lowell Avenue.
A bomb squad with the Massachusetts State Police removed the mortar from the scene at 6:30 p.m.
Trooper Kenneth Gaetz said the mortar is believed to be from the World War II era. Gaetz said the mortar was stored in a bunker overnight and will be detonated today in Devens.
“They’re treating the mortar as if it’s live,” Gaetz said.