A 19-year-old Beach Park, Ill., man was arrested early Thursday after he set off a bottle bomb outside an Augustana College residence hall, police said.

Rock Island Assistant Police Chief Jason Foy said officers were called to the scene about 3 a.m. regarding somebody detonating the device.

Officers were directed to Westerlin Hall, in the 3200 block of 10th Avenue, where they found evidence of the device.

Brett M. Johnson was arrested in connection with the incident. He is charged with one count of disorderly conduct. He was taken to the Rock Island County Jail. His bond was set at $1,500, and he was released after posting bond.

Foy said no one was injured in the incident.

Such devices are made from 1-liter or 2-liter plastic cola bottles that are designed to make a loud pop.

According to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the bombs are usually made with household chemicals. When the ingredients are combined and shaken in a capped container, the internal gas pressure causes the plastic bottles to expand and explode. Some of the chemicals chosen to make the device may be harmful.

(14) comments


Bill Nye the science guy made on of those.. Mentos & Coke or dry ice. And that pop bottle shrapnel can fly up to ten feet.. I'm surprised this didn't make it on to Nation News..


Timothy Mcvay Jr


It's really sad thing is that this kid will suffer for this a lot.--Probably kicked out of school; maybe has to make a total career plan change. Grow up and think about what you are doing!


It'll cost him some money and hassle, but ultimately he'll likely get a slap on the wrist. Disorderly conduct is generally not a very serious charge and he'll likely end up with something much less (he ought to, anyway - really, what's the big deal? Kids at Augie get caught with drugs frequently and the parents aren't even notified, let alone getting the kid kicked out of school). Yeah, it was a dumb thing to do, but hardly something that falls in the category of life-altering...that's a tad dramatic. It would be awfully unfortunate if they punish this guy severely because of recent events in other parts of the country - completely different category. I'm sure he's learned some lesson from all of the overkill hassle he's already been through.


Ok -- yes: what a misleading and pandering title! Come on, QC Times


I have to agree. The word "bomb" was misused to represent this story. Sure, the guy mixed some chemical, which create a large amount of gasses, which then cause the plastic to stretch beyond capacity, which then results in an "explosion" of said gas into the atmosphere, and the very fast escape of that gas produces a large amount of noise very quickly.

So in other words, it made a loud bang. I am going to bet that alcohol was used, since it was done late at night, on the school campus.

Let me quess, alcohol, 2-liter bottles, dry ice and water is going to be banned now from all college campuses?

We made much larger noise making devices in the military, using MREs and some of their components, and this was done in Saudi in Tent City.. ahh.. the good 'ole days.

Mark Riley 4 State Senate
Mark Riley 4 State Senate

Why the word bomb? salacious? attention getting? sell some papers? what about the word "bomb" thrown about by unscrupulous and dishonest media. I guess I learned to make bombs at Moline Sr High in the 80's what a bunch of terrorist the science department turned out to be. I think we should find some of those retirees they could be working with enemies of the state. I don't have any evidence of the "device" that we made though.

Mark Riley 4 State Senate
Mark Riley 4 State Senate

The bureaucracy run amuck. This is why you don't let your government take away your weapons. The incompetence of wasting resources in the justice system as well as law enforcement can be assumed to be as incompetent when assessing real threats and kid hijinks. The system wont suddenly get smart and discover or react to real threats.


This article makes me wonder what the ingredients were.
Its tempting to look it up on the internet, but then the ATF or police would be knocking on my door . . . si I will keeping wondering

Arc Angel

WOW! Any more directions to build a bomb!


It isn't a bomb. It's a practical joke, not any different than the stuff almost every single baby boomer did when we were younger.


Yawn. I hope the idiots don't make this a big deal. It is just youthful hijinks.


Yeah no kidding! It was probably a "works bomb"... Make a bunch a little tin foil balls, fill a pop bottle with works cleaner, tighten the cat, give it a few shakes, and toss it and wait....Made a few in high school....harmless


The stuff I did as a kid... Leave a small fire burning next to a 2 liter pop bottle with a cup of water and a handful of calcium carbide - Not only a bottle bomb, but a good size fireball. I didn't realize I was risking jail...

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