As the Palatine Police Department continues to investigate the eight homemade chemical bombs found Sunday, another device popped in the area, just outside of Palatine.
Police found a homemade explosive device in the 900 block of Carnegie Street, right off of Rohlwing Road in Rolling Meadows Monday afternoon. According to the Daily Herald, the Rolling Meadows Police Department is investigating but have yet to determine how the device was made or what it was. Authorities do not believe there is a connection between the homemade chemical bombs located in Palatine and the device found in Rolling Meadows.
“This is just getting stupid,” said Palatine resident Cathy Martin, “We’re going to end up with a lot of hurt kids if this doesn’t stop.”
The discovery came just one day after the Cook County sheriff’s bomb squad disarmed eight homemade chemical bombs the courtyard of a condominium complex in Palatine.
According to the Palatine Police Department, filled with bleach, eight “MacGyver type bombs” were found around the courtyard behind the Randville Condominiums in Palatine at 1116 E. Randville Drive, less than one mile from Palatine High School Sunday afternoon.
“That’s pretty scary,” said Martin, “Very disturbing.” Martin, who lives on the other side of the courtyard, directly behind the condo complex, said the whole neighborhood is on edge. “What if it would have exploded?” is still the big question on everyone’s minds, said Martin.
“This absolutely could have been a serious situation,” said Cook County Sheriff’s Office spokesman, Frank Bilecki. The level of danger these kinds of devices pose, all depends on how close a person is to the bomb at the time it explodes. Bilecki said, “You might just get a splash and end up with skin irritation or chemical burns, but if you’re close enough you could have vision loss, get serious burns and spend weeks, possibly months in the hospital.”
According Bilecki, each device could have caused damage up to about a 100-foot radius; eight homemade chemical bombs were located in the courtyard of the condominium complex, near Palatine High School.
Palatine Police Cmdr. Kurt Schroeder said, “It works off pressure, it build and builds until it explodes.” According to the Cook County bomb squad, it can take homemade chemical bombs anywhere from a couple of minutes to several hours to explode.
Bilecki said the time it takes for a chemical bomb to explode depends on a number of variables but mainly the temperature and chemical mixture.
Placed in the grass in a shaded courtyard, Bilecki said the devices found in Palatine would have had a prolonged detonation time in comparison to a device left on asphalt in the sun.
According to police, in a variety of plastic containers, the homemade chemical bombs ranged in size from 16 ounces to one gallon. To deter copycats, Bilecki said would not say what kinds of chemicals were used to construct the devices found in Palatine.
“These were essentially made with products you would find under anyone’s kitchen sink,” said Bilecki, “We see so many copycats and we don’t like to give them any help.”
The Palatine Police Department is leading the investigation, “Officers are interviewing people and they have their informants they're working with,” said Cmdr. Schroeder.
With no suspects or arrests made in this case, officers have increased police presence in the areas around Palatine High School. Cmdr. Schroeder said, “We’re out there knocking on doors, beat patrols are out there both on foot and bicycle keeping an eye out.”
“How could you ever know?” Martin said her neighborhood could very well be full of chemical bombs. “Look at this place, there are bottles everywhere.”
Police advise people to use caution as authorities investigate both homemade chemical bomb cases. Cmdr. Schroeder said, “If someone sees a suspicious bottle, call 911.”
A nearby resident spotted one of the devices in the courtyard of Randville Condominiums and called 911 Sunday, Sept 30 about 1:15 p.m. Deputy Fire Chief William Gabrenya said firefighters confirmed the presence of several devices and verified the potential hazard of the chemical bombs.
Firefighters blocked off the courtyard, photographed the devices and called in the Palatine Police who notified the Cook County sheriff's bomb squad.
At 2:30 p.m. the bomb squad arrived at the courtyard at 1116 E. Randville Drive to disarm and dispose of the eight chemical bombs. According to the Palatine Fire Department, none of the devices went off, no one was injured and the Cook County Bomb Squad had no problems removing the bombs from the area.