Tahlequah Man Jailed After Homemade Bomb Explodes
TAHLEQUAH, Oklahoma - A Tahlequah man is in the Cherokee County Jail after authorities say he manufactured a bomb. Convicted felon Jeremy Ramirez was injured when explosives went off as he attached a blasting cap to a cell phone, the Tahlequah Daily Press reported.
A search of houses in Tahlequah and Stilwell turned up more explosive materials.
A photo taken by Josh Newston with the Tahlequah Daily Press shows 27-year-old Jeremy Ramirez being taken into custody early Friday morning.
Witnesses had told investigators Ramirez was attaching a blasting cap to a cell phone when it exploded.
We talked with ATF Assistant Special Agent In Charge Paul Vanderplow about the case.
"[Ramirez] had obtained some explosive blasting caps and he proceeded to use them in an unsafe manner and unfortunately the device activated," said Vanderplow.
Tahlequah police were called to a hospital when Ramirez showed up with shrapnel wounds. ATF agents later interviewed him at the police department.
"[It] went off in his hand and caused some pretty significant damage to his hand and some of his extremities," Vanderplow said.
Ramirez was booked into the Cherokee County Detention Center, after more explosive materials were found during search warrants at homes in Tahlequah and Stilwell.
Vanderplow said he was surprised the blast wasn't fatal for Ramirez. He said any explosive material not handled by qualified personnel in a controlled environment can have terrible consequences.
"This device was made to initiate a firing chain and it doesn't take much, as far as power, to set these off," Vanderplow said.
Ramirez was discharged from the Oklahoma Department of Corrections in September, 2012, after serving time for possession of drugs, possession of a stolen vehicle and feloniously pointing a firearm.
Those offenses took place in Tulsa and Adair counties.
Investigators don't know yet what kind of intent Ramirez may have had.
"[There are] a couple different scenarios we're working on. We don't have all the information put together yet. We're still working on that for further investigative leads to follow up on that," Vanderplow said.