Bomb squad called after routine DUI reported

Bomb squad called after routine DUI reported

Erratic driving was reported by CALFire personnel Thursday night, prompting California Highway Patrol to respond, and ultimately, the bomb squad.

The call “was placed around 6:30 p.m.” said CHP Sergent Robert Boyer.

According to Boyer, by the time CHP arrived, the reporting CALFire personnel had managed to convince the driver to pull over near the intersection of Cana Highway and Hamilton Nord Cana Highway north of Chico.

Boyer said the reporting officer performed a “drug recognition evaluation,” which he said helped the officer decide to detain suspect Shannon Dodge, of Chico, on suspicion of being under the influence of methamphetamines.

While searching the car the reporting officer noticed what appeared to be an explosive device in the trunk and called it in. Boyer said he received the message to respond around 8:30 p.m. and was on scene about ten minutes later. The bomb squad arrived between 9-10 p.m. It also forced the intersection to be blocked off for about two hours.

“It was a brownish copper-colored and shaped like a bowling bowl ball,” Boyer said. The fuse coming out of it made it look like an explosive device.

The bomb squad first sent a robot. Then a bomb tech secured the area by detonating their own explosive device on the suspected bomb.

Boyer said after the explosion an analysis showed “X-rayed contents of the device and saw it was just sand.”

Dodge will not be prosecuted for anything related to the bomb-looking device, Boyer said, but warns that it is considered a violation to create anything that “looks like a replica of a bomb.”

Dodge was still arrested for DUI suspicion, and taken in for blood testing. According to Boyer, Dodge said she didn’t know about the trunk’s contents as the car belonged to a family member.

Josh Cozine can be reached at [email protected] or @joshcozine on Twitter.