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CHAMPION Highly explosive device turns up in yard



Published: Tue, January 15, 2002 @ 12:00 a.m.



ATF agents will help police determine how the explosive ended up in a residential area.

By PEGGY SINKOVICH

VINDICATOR TRUMBULL STAFF

CHAMPION -- An explosive device commonly used in gas well drillings was found in the back yard of a Chapel Hill Drive home.

Police Chief Dennis Steinbeck said an occupant of the home, in the 100 block, called police around 7:30 p.m. Monday to report he found what he thought was an explosive.

"We called the Youngstown bomb squad, and they responded immediately," Steinbeck said. "They said the device was used for drilling gas wells."

Highly explosive: Joe DeMatteo of the bomb squad said the device contained Iremite, a highly explosive material.

"It looks like a tube of sausage," DeMatteo said. "It's very soft and it's used to drop down into holes."

DeMatteo said the bomb squad rarely comes across Iremite.

"We usually run into dynamite. This is not real common," he said.

DeMatteo and Steinbeck said the device could have caused substantial damage to the home. Steinbeck said a juvenile at the home told his parents he found the device on another residential street and brought it home.

"At this time, we do not know how it got there," Steinbeck said. "I'm going to ask ATF agents to assist us."

Frank A. D'Alesio, agent in charge of the Youngstown office of the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, said his agents would be in the township today.

"Right now we don't have much information, but we will be helping," D'Alesio said.

Was detonated: The bomb squad took the device to a remote part of the township and detonated it.

"This could have caused harm to someone," Steinbeck said. "I'm very thankful no one was injured."

sinkovich@vindy.com




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