Suspicious water bottles found at Milford school, playground

(UPDATED) MILFORD – The Milford Police Department has confirmed the discovery of two suspicious objects found at Benjamin Banneker Elementary School Monday morning.

The two objects, water bottles with singed paper towels stuffed inside, were found by a custodian around 7:25 a.m. on the ground near a playground, according to Milford School District Superintendent Dr. Phyllis Kohel.

Lieutenant Ed Huey of the Milford Police Department said the “suspicious packages” contained a powdery, liquid mixture with bits of aluminum foil, but added that he’s “not so sure it was a bottle bomb, per say.”

“I think it was a just an open area, convenient, just a poor choice for an experiment. Bottled volcanoes are a lot different than bottle bombs. We haven’t seen bottle bombs for several years now,” he said.”This one wasn’t really what we typically describe as a bottle bomb. It had some tissues in it that looked like it had been charred. It was obviously something that by it’s very appearance looked suspicious. It had a chemical inside that the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control wanted to examine further.”

True bottle bombs will explode within 30-40 seconds, according to Lt. Huey, and could leave anyone nearby hurt by the blast or burned by the acidic mixture once the liquid inside gets hot enough to detonate.

Both bottles found at the Milford school were examined by the school resource officer and other Milford officers before being determined that both were “failed attempts.” The bottles have since been sent to the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control for further investigation.

Footage from school district cameras has been given to the Milford Police Department for further review.

Lt. Huey advises not picking up bottles containing liquid if it’s found on the ground. “Chances are, it’s just trash. But if you see a clear liquid, I wouldn’t suggest picking it up. You’ll want to look for metal inside, that would be the aluminum foil. You will probably see cloudiness. But if it’s something that’s been there a while, it’s probably trash.”

Because of the unstable and dangerous mixture inside true “bottle bombs,” Lt. Huey suggests calling 9-1-1 and backing away quickly from any bottles on the ground containing dark solids.


 

(ORIGINAL) MILFORD – The Milford Police Department has confirmed the discovery of two suspicious objects found at Benjamin Banneker Elementary School Monday morning.

The two objects, water bottles with singed paper towels stuffed inside, were found by a custodian around 7:25 a.m. on the ground near a playground, according to Milford School District Superintendent Dr. Phyllis Kohel.

Police said the bottles also contained a dangerous combination of bits of aluminum foil and a household cleaner. Both bottles were examined by the school resource officer and other Milford officers before being determined that both were “failed attempts.” The bottles have since been sent to the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control for further investigation.

Footage from school district cameras has been given to the police department in hopes of leading to an arrest.

Jennifer Antonik can be reached at mc@newszap.com

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