UPDATED: Wired water jug found in dumpster
Detonated by police, 'likely not armed'
October 10, 2019
The Kern County Sheriff's Office Bomb Squad Unit was deployed to Shafter Friday when a suspicious device was found in a dumpster between the Shafter Courthouse and the Omni Health Medical Clinic on James Street.
At approximately 9:30 a.m. Friday morning, the Bomb Squad arrived to investigate.
Once the robot had inspected the device, the device was detonated.
Asked if the device was armed, Chief Kevin Zimmermann said, "The device was detonated by the Bomb Squad. We will not know if the device was armed until the evidence has been analyzed. But, there was no secondary explosion when it was detonated, so it was likely not armed.
"A call was made to the Shafter Police Department by a worker at the clinic about a suspicious device found in the dumpster between their building and the courthouse. According to Chief Zimmermann, the device was a five-gallon water container with a cell phone and wires attached to it.
The courthouse was evacuated, as well as everyone in the 300 block of James Street, with the alleys and streets blocked off. Zimmermann called the Bomb Squad Unit, and they arrived to investigate. A Bomb Squad Unit member was dressed in protective gear to investigate further as well as activating the robot equipped with a camera to approach the device.
There are no suspects in the planting of the device in the dumpster, and the investigation is ongoing.