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Authorities seize possible explosive devices

The St. Paul Bomb Squad is examining possible explosive devices seized in a search that restricted access to a neighborhood in southwest Rochester for 3 1/2 hours on Friday.

A handful of military-grade or possible explosive devices, such as hand grenades or similar items, were found in a garage in the 1400 block of First Street Southwest in the search conducted between 4:30 p.m. and 8 p.m., according to Capt. Brian Winters. Also found were items that could be used in the construction of a homemade explosive device, he said.

Residences on either side of the house were evacuated, streets in the area were blocked, and police went door-to-door to tell neighbors what was going on, Winters said.

The Rochester Fire Department and Gold Cross Ambulance were on standby.

Authorities searched the garage after receiving information that a 50-year-old man staying at the house had long guns, handguns and explosive devices. No guns were found, Winters said.


The man was detained while the search was conducted, but he was released pending the results of the items found in the garage, Winters said. The results will determine whether the case is referred to the county attorney's office for possible charges. Winters said he doesn't know how long the analysis will take.

"The important thing is that the items have been removed from his possession," Winters said.

Two other people live in the residence but are not suspected in the case, Winters said. He said the 50-year-old man apparently lives in or spends most of his time in the garage.

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