Man finds soda bottle bomb in mailbox

Posted March 25, 2010, at 9:37 p.m.

For the second time this week, area police have been called out to investigate incidents involving soda bottle bombs.

The first episode occurred Monday night outside a building on the University of Maine campus. That incident is being investigated by campus police, UM spokesman Joe Carr said.

On Thursday, it was the Holden Police Department’s turn to field a soda bomb report.

Holden police Sgt. Eugene Fizell said a Levenseller Road man called police about 11:45 a.m. to report he’d found a blown-up bottle in his mailbox.

“We’re guessing it was put in there sometime last night,” Fizell said. He said the remnants were taken to the police station. He said what was left of the bottle, which was shriveled from the heat and pressure, contained aluminum foil.

“Our initial response is that this appears to be a random incident,” Fizell said, adding that there were no other soda bottle bomb reports elsewhere in town Thursday.

Police who have dealt with the devices, also known as acid bombs, say they are made by mixing a common household cleaner with aluminum foil inside an empty soda bottle. Gas from the resulting chemical reaction builds up, and the bottle explodes.

Though no injuries were reported as a result of either incident this week, the devices are dangerous because they can burn, blind or otherwise injure people, according to police officials. The lack of a fuse or timer makes them unpredictable, police said.

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