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Police investigating bottle bomb as 'a criminal matter'

Detectives continue to investigate who made a dry ice and water pressure bomb found Sunday morning in the front yard of a house in the 400 block of West Hemlock Street, said Sequim Police Chief Robert Spinks.

"The intent is undetermined. The residents there are retired, so maybe it was meant for someone else.

"It could just be stupid kids doing stupid things. But when you go up the gradient, you can do some serious damage to people and property."

Once the bomb was discovered about 9:30 a.m. Sunday,

residents within a 200-yard radius were evacuated and people in the surrounding area were told to stay indoors.

The street was closed for three hours.

Spinks said the potential charge is "malicious placement of an explosive" which, according to RCW 70.74.270, is a Class B felony that carries a maximum prison term of 10 years.

"We're not on condition red," he said.

"Detectives will follow up on it, process the evidence and see if we get anywhere. Hopefully, we won't see these popping up all over the place."

The device was described as a two-liter plastic bottle filled with a liquid with a baggie of powder suspended inside and the cap taped closed.

Washington State Patrol troopers arrived on scene fairly quickly but had to wait until noon for the bomb squad's truck to arrive from Bremerton, Spinks said.

"They said it was a dry ice and water pressure bomb after they disarmed it and tested the liquid. Between that and a vinegar and baking soda bomb, the dry ice one is stronger," he said.

"The larger sizes of these devices can cause personal injury and significant property damage," Spinks said.

"Because these can be dangerous, especially the larger the size of the bottle and amount of materials used, this is viewed as a criminal matter and we'll investigate," he said.

"Fortunately, the device didn't explode, no one was hurt, but it did tie up police, firefighters and state troopers staff and brought the neighborhood to a standstill for a few hours," Spinks said.



Reach Brian Gawley at bgawley@sequimgazette.com.



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