Homemade Bomb Ignites a Federal Investigation

(ANTHON, IA) It's certainly not something you'd expect to see happen in a small northwest Iowa town. A pipe bomb found near the Anthon's water tower.

Local and federal investigators are trying to figure out who left it in Anthon, Iowa. A city employee found the device yesterday and took it to city hall -- a bomb that officials say was big enough to do significant damage.

The water tower sitting way up top on a hill overlooking the small town of Anthon, Iowa.
It's not an area where the Woodbury County Sheriffs Office would assume something so dangerous would be found but there it was, a homemade pipe bomb.

"We don't get these calls everyday," said Major Todd Wieck, for the Woodbury County Sheriffs Office.

The bomb was found by an Anthon city worker Tuesday afternoon. It was a gut feeling that led the Sheriffs office, the Iowa State Fire Marshal and the bureau of Alcohol, tobacco, firearms and explosives to the tower.

"It was suspicious because of the environment it was in. The city worker knew that this bomb, or piece of pipe should not have been where it was at and immediately identified there was a problem with that," said Wieck.

Officials say the bomb was lit but luckily it never went off and officials also don't know how long it was even here for.

The bomb was temporarily disabled and taken to a shooting range just north of Anthon.
There officials safely detonated the bomb. The investigation into who planted it by the tower is ongoing. Right now, there are no leads.

"But we do have some good ideas and once we start working with the federal government, cause it's, when you do this it's considered, in my opinion, an act of domestic terrorism. Even though it didn't detonate it was meant to and it was meant to create a problem for a lot of people," said Wieck.

I spoke with some people in Anthon today about the scare, one man said he wasn't worried about it, others didn't want to comment.

Officials say if you ever see something suspicious, don't hesitate to call the Sheriff's department.

Major Wieck says its better to be safe than sorry and the slogan, "see something say something" is spot on.