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San Jose Police: Pipe bomb found in van during DUI stop

Posted on in DUI

Police in San Jose called in the bomb squad to deal with an item found in a van during an investigation into an alleged driving under the influence offense. Officers with the city's MERGE Unit, which the Mercury News says is the equivalent to a SWAT Team, decided to pull over a car for a DUI investigation. It is not clear what led to the police suspicion that the driver may have been under the influence.

Police also say that they found evidence of some kind of drug crime and evidence to support their suspicion of a DUI offense. Officers searched the Windstar van and found what they believed to be a pipe bomb.

The bomb squad reportedly was called to the area near First Street and Matrix Drive in San Jose, California. Authorities closed streets in the area, but the neighborhood was not evacuated. Police say that the bomb unit exploded the device in a controlled explosion. No injuries or damage has been reported related to the police detonation. Neighbors near to the location claim that the blast could be felt and heard.

The 25-year-old San Jose man accused of driving the van was arrested on suspicion of DUI, unlawful possession of a destructive device and drug offenses. He was transported to jail, where authorities say he is being held without bond.

Authorities say that the man has no significant criminal history and police say that they cannot link any other bomb-making materials to the man. Police say that the man has not been cooperative with police.

Dealing with the police can be daunting. A person suspected of an offense may not understand that it is possible to remain cooperative with police, while protecting their own constitutional rights at the same time. Being polite and cooperating does not require given up important rights, such as the right to remain silent. A person who police suspect of a crime has the right to request the presence of a criminal defense lawyer during any questioning.

Source: San Jose Mercury News "DUI stop gets explosive as police detonate pipe bomb, arrest San Jose man," Robert Salonga, Nov. 8, 2012

  • Our firm handles criminal defense for people accused of a crime in the Santa Cruz, California area. For more information on dealing with the police, and the firm please visit our Santa Cruz criminal defense website.

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