CSU student charged with setting off explosives on campus

lgordon@ledger-enquirer.comOctober 6, 2009 

A 21-year-old student was arrested by Columbus State University police and charged in connection with two incidents involving homemade explosive devices that were detonated on main campus, according to a university press release.

Caleb Miles Miller of Mauk, Ga., faces two counts of possession of tools for crime, two counts of possession/manufacture of a destructive device and one count of possession of destructive device with intent to intimidate or destroy a public building. He’s scheduled to appear in Recorders Court on the charges Wednesday morning.

In the most recent incident, reported at 9:06 a.m. Sept. 26, university police were told that an apparent homemade “firecracker” had exploded with a loud blast near a parking lot south of CSU’s Center for Commerce and Technology. Smoke also spewed from the device briefly, and the Columbus Police Department's bomb squad was summoned to investigate and dispose of it.

On Tuesday, University Police Cpl. J. Brett Stanelle approached Miller on campus to question him about the latest incident. In his report, Stanelle indicated Miller had, on two occasions, fashioned an explosive device out of common household items. The earlier incident occurred about the same time of day on Feb. 26 in another parking area on campus.

In both incidents no one was injured and no property was damaged beyond the charring of the ground around the detonation site.

“Thankfully, no one was hurt and there was no damage to property, but in a post-Virginia Tech world, you have to take these threats seriously,” University Police Chief Rus Drew said in the release. “We’re grateful that we were able to identify the perpetrator.”

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