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5 arrested for setting off homemade bombs

5 arrested for setting off homemade bombs

Estimated read time: 1-2 minutes

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SALT LAKE CITY -- What may have started as a simple prank landed five people in jail on felony charges.

Police booked the group of 18- to 20-year-olds on charges of setting off incendiary devices Wednesday night at the West High School football field.

Detective Dennis McGowan with the Salt Lake City Police Department said a police officer was driving past the field at about 9 p.m. Wednesday when he heard what he described as a loud explosion.

"As he got closer, he watched this group and then he heard the explosion a second time," McGowan said. The explosions ended up being a product of several homemade bombs.

"Subsequent investigation turned up several more of these devices, as well as the makings of these devices," McGowan said. "There was aluminum foil, plastic bottles and what looked like some home cleaning chemicals."

Bomb technicians were brought in to disable three of the devices. "If it was important enough to call them out, certainly these devices were quite harmful," McGowan said. "With everything going on in the world, that's an additional reason why it gets the attention of law enforcement."

Twenty-year-old Latawnya Madsen, 19-year-old Justin Bates, 18-year-old Carli Winquest, 19-year-old Reiddyn Wihongi and 19-year-old Joel Kneebone were booked into jail on third-degree felony charges. McGowan underscored that official charges will be screened with the district attorney's office.

No one was hurt, nor was there any property damage.


Marc Giauque


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