Two juveniles charged with making, detonating bottle bombs

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Updated: 4/21 11:15 pm

AMSTERDAM, N.Y. –  Two juveniles were arrested and charged for allegedly making and detonating bottle bombs, and police continue to look for a third suspect.

According to authorities, police responded to 255 Division Street on Sunday around 5:10 p.m. after a caller reported hearing “popping noises” and youths around an abandoned house. They said suspicious devices, later determined to be bottle bombs, were located in front of the address. 

“It was pretty scary hearing them go off,” neighbor Mary LaJeunesse said.

Christian Laguna was having family over for Easter with police came to his door around 5 p.m..

“They told us we had to leave, so I got all my cousins out and my uncle that was in the bathroom. I had to tell him to get out,” he said. “They made us wait outside til like 8:30. We had to stay outside. We couldn’t come in. We couldn’t even close our door.”

The area was cordoned off for further investigation. Police said they located about 12 bottle bombs, several of which had exploded, and five of which were still active. 

The New York State Police Bomb Squad arrived to the scene and determined that the bottle bombs were safe. 

“If they go off from the pressure, if one of the kids picked them up, and it went off in his hand or something, it could be dangerous,” Detective Lieutenant Kurt Conroy said.

Around 8:30 p.m., the area was cleared and safe. However, police said six bottle bombs were also deployed and detonated behind a factory on Yeoman Street. 

Upon investigation, police found two 14-year-old males who were allegedly responsible for making and deploying the bottle bombs. As of Monday afternoon, police said they have not located a third juvenile who they are looking to interview. 

The two teens were located and taken to Police Headquarters for questioning Sunday evening. They will answer charges of Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Third Degree, a felony, Placing a False Bomb or Hazardous Substance in the Second Degree, a felony, and Reckless Endangerment in the Second Degree, a misdemeanor, in Montgomery County Family Court.

The Amsterdam Police Department was assisted by Amsterdam Fire Department, Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office, New York State Police and their Bomb Squad, Montgomery County Emergency Management Office and GAVAC.

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