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Man accused in plot to blow up Edmond utilities charged with arson

Charles J. Columbus, 24, is wanted by police after chemicals used to make explosives were found in his home. A roommate told police he saw the defendant mix the chemicals and pour them on a lock to city water well hatch.
by Tim Willert Published: November 6, 2012
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Police are looking for an Edmond man accused of making anti-government statements and plotting to blow up city utilities with chemicals found in his mobile home.

An arrest warrant was issued Tuesday for Charles Jayden Columbus, 24, after he was charged in Oklahoma County District Court with third-degree arson, court records show.

Columbus was charged with a crime after investigators found “obvious charring on and around” the lock to a city water well hatch in the 900 block of S Bryant Avenue, according to a probable cause affidavit filed with the charge.

A roommate told Edmond police he saw Columbus mix the chemicals and pour them on the “exterior locking mechanism” of a concrete building on the northeast side of Hafer Park investigators identified as a city water well site.

Matthew Laduke said Columbus “tried to burn off the lock on the hatch,” but when the chemical mixture exploded and began to burn, “they ran away, afraid,” according to the affidavit.

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by Tim Willert
Education Reporter
Tim Willert is a native Californian with Oklahoma ties who covers education. Prior to moving to Oklahoma in June 2011, he was as an editor for FOXSports.com in Century City, Calif., and reported on courts for the Los Angeles Daily Journal and...
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