Homemade explosive device behind bomb scare in London, Ont., police say

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LONDON, Ont. - A homemade device was responsible for a bomb scare that left a neighbourhood in this southwestern Ontario city on tenterhooks and forced about 80 people from their homes.
The evacuation order for 20 homes ended early Tuesday, but police had to obtain a search warrant to continue their investigation and determine if charges were warranted.
Police Chief Murray Faulkner said the device at the centre of the incident was homemade, but would not say much more about it.
"It was a homemade device that definitely had a potential of harm, we believe," Faulkner said.
"When you have that belief, you take all the precautions necessary."
Police were guarding the scene Tuesday and materials seized the day before had been sent for forensic examination.
Faulkner said that because of the public danger, officers did not need a warrant to enter the house or send in a bomb disposal robot on Monday.
But with the danger over, "to carry on now the investigation, we grind to a halt, keep the house secure and then obtain a search warrant to go in and search for evidence that might lead to charges being laid in this case," he said.
The drama began just before 7 a.m. Monday when police arrived at the home on a medical call and found something suspicious.
A 17-year-old male was taken to hospital with an undisclosed injury or ailment.
Faulkner said he doubted police had been able to talk to the teen, and added there were "some mental health issues here."
The chief said he had concerns about the role of the Internet in cases like this, although he stressed there's no evidence that was a factor here.
"Not necessarily yet has it been proven in this case."
"But we know from the occurrences that we investigate and that we've heard about through other police agencies and national security forces that many of the stand-alone individuals that produce detonation devices, they obtain their information from the Internet," Faulkner said.
Police have said the device wasn't tied to any criminal activity like a drug lab.
Bomb squad officers set off several controlled explosions Monday night as they worked to defuse the device.
At first, two neighbouring homes on Lisa Court were evacuated. But later in the day, after a bomb disposal robot was sent in and police got their first indication of what they were dealing with, the evacuation zone was widened to several streets.
A transit bus was provided as a warm shelter for people evacuated from their homes, and the city also set up an emergency space at a community centre.

Geographic location: London, Ont., LONDON, Southwestern Ontario

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