Explosives found, man arrested | February 8, 2008 | Danville Express | DanvilleSanRamon.com |


Danville Express

Community Pulse - February 8, 2008

Explosives found, man arrested

Danville police arrested a man on charges of possessing an illegal explosive device after two 911 calls brought officers to the 800 block of Diablo Road last Friday. Explosive materials were found, and police blocked off the area for about three hours as a cautionary measure.

"At about 12:30, a 911 dispatch center received calls about a disturbance with a gun involved," said Lt. Mark Williams. They arrived at the residence and detained Neil Cooper, 27, of Danville, who was identified as the person responsible for the disturbance.

"We did a protective sweep of the residence and during the sweep, we located stuff that looked like bombs - three road flares tied together with electrical tape, wires coming from the bottom, connected to a 9-volt battery," said Williams. "The device looked extremely real."

Police locked down the house and began an evacuation process of the area between El Cerro Boulevard and Bobbie Drive. Police set up their command post in the parking lot at Sloat Garden Center, and police rerouted school traffic via Bobbie Drive and Turrini Drive.

"Acorn Learning Center (at 816 Diablo Road) was immediately evacuated to Vista Grande School," said Williams.

Danville police called the Walnut Creek bomb squad, which examined the device and determined it was not an actual bomb. However, the squad found that Cooper had five to six explosive devices concealed in a circular cardboard tube. He also had a .22-caliber handgun, an air gun, police baton and other police items.

The District Attorney charged Cooper on Tuesday with three misdemeanors: possession of an explosive device, possession of a deadly weapon, and brandishing a replica firearm.