Posted 2:31 PM 1/5/2012 : Internet feeds growth in homemade bomb making
A Colorado Springs man faces up to six years in prison and a maximum of half million dollar fine for setting off homemade explosives outside of his home last week. Edward Kiley, 57, was arrested December 29 and his neighborhood evacuated the following day as members of the Colorado Springs Police Department and El Paso County Sheriff's Office bomb squads along with agents with the Bureau of Alcohol. Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives searched his home.
Officer Bill Betts, the Regional Explosives Coordinator, says the chemicals they found are highly unstable. He they use every precaution when searching a property it's suspected that homemade explosives have been made.
"To me it's extremely dangerous and probably one of the scariest things we do is go into a place where people have been making their own explosives," Betts said. "If people don't know what they're doing they may not only take out their own house, but their neighbors as well."
According to the arrest affidavit, Kiley told investigators he was making M-80's and that he bought the chemicals and learned how to make them on the internet. News 5 searched and found several "how-to" videos posted on YouTube that demonstrated the mixing of chemicals and production of the charges.
The sites community guidelines specifically warns users to "Don't post videos showing bad stuff like animal abuse, drug abuse, under-age drinking and smoking, or bomb making." News 5 flagged the videos we discovered as having inappropriate content.
Betts says the information has been publicly available for a long time. "It's been out in book form in several different types of books, but now with the proliferation of the internet, obviously, the information is out on the internet as well," he said.
That ease of access to the information has created a growing problem in the community as people, particularly teenagers, make dangerous explosives without understanding the risks.
"It's a felony to be manufacturing explosives on your own," Betts said. "It shouldn't be manufactured at all."
Mr. Kiley is being held at the El Paso County Criminal Justice center on $250,000 bond. He's due in court on Monday to formally hear the charges against him.