Explosive device goes off in library drop box, investigation underway

Blakesburg Public Library


On Thursday, the Wapello County Sheriffâ??s Office charged two 16-year-olds and a 17-year-old from the Blakesburg area with Reckless Use of Fire or Explosives in connection with a homemade explosive device that was left in the book return drop box at the Blakesburg Public Library.

That incident was reported to investigators on July 24, 2013.

The small bomb made using a plastic pop bottle and chemicals did explode inside the drop box.

Fortunately, no one was hurt. The explosion did just minor damage the drop box.

Reckless use of fire or explosives is a serious misdemeanor.

The names of the juveniles have not been released.


An investigation is underway after a homemade explosive device went off this week inside a drop box at an area public library.

The Wapello County Sheriff's Office received a call from the Blakesburg Public Library Wednesday morning reporting that someone placed an explosive device inside the drop box where customers return books. The drop box is located at the public library at 103 E. Cass St. in Blakesburg. Police say that homemade device that exploded after pressure is built up inside a plastic bottle caused by a chemical reaction inside the bottle.

â??It was reported as a bomb that had exploded in their drop box,â?? Chief Deputy Don Phillips said. â??The explosive device that is was a pop bottle that had some things put in to cause a chemical reaction therefore causing pressure in the bottle that's what caused it to explode.â??

There are no suspects at this time. The Wapello County Sheriff's Office and the Iowa State Fire Marshal's Office is investigating the matter, and it's unknown when the explosive device was planted in the drop box.