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Columbia police investigating possible downtown explosive

EDITOR'S NOTE: Police are looking into whether the device is explosive. That has been corrected in this story.


Columbia police are investigating whether a device found in a flowerbed on the 700 block of East Broadway around noon on Wednesday was an explosive.

According to witnesses, the device was found in a flowerbed in front of Central Bank.

Business owners from that area that were and those that were not aware of the situation each said they were shocked about the possible explosive found in the flowerbed.

Officials say a department bomb tech arrived and secured the device without incident.

Christian Tabak, the public information specialist with Columbia Police, says it is unknown how long the device was buried there or by whom and it remains to be determined if the device actually has explosive capabilities.

In a Facebook release, Columbia police say the situation does not appear to pose a threat to the community.”

Karl Wehmhoener



  1. What kind of reporting is this? The headline says “not explosive.” Then you keep using the phrase “device.” Then you report that “it is not known whether the device actually has explosive capabilities.” First – isn’t a “device” by definition potentially explosive? Otherwise it isn’t a “device” – it’s a piece of junk. But finding a piece of junk, I guess, wouldn’t be very newsworthy would it? So why not just pull the whole piece.

  2. From the police and fire scanners there is not much to report about the beginning of the incident because law enforcement tries really hard to stay off the radio during responses to bomb threats. I guess they don’t want to alert any bad guys listening to the scanner who may command detonate the device.

    Officers communicated via their mobile computer terminals in their cars giving instructions to block vehicle and foot traffic in the area.

    One female officer radioed: “Hey, I am not in my car, so I do not know what you said.” The response: “No foot traffic on the sidewalk.”

    12:10 pm, unrelated, there was a request for a female officer to search a female suspect. Can trans-female officers do this job? Inquiring minds want to know.

    12:17 pm Channel 2 is restricted for the “Broadway incident.” They do not want to say “bomb” over the radio.

    12:25 pm, units blocking traffic are told they can clear the scene and allow traffic to flow normally.

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