Live pipe bomb found at Iowa polling place, police confirm

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Ankeny, Iowa — Police here confirmed Tuesday evening that a suspicious device found outside a polling place for a special election the city was holding was a live pipe bomb, CBS Des Moines affiliate KCCI-TV reports. The Lakeside Center was evacuated after the device was found.

More than a dozen people had already cast ballots, the station says.

Polk County Auditor Jamie Fitzgerald said a passerby alerted staff members at approximately 9:25 a.m. that there was a suspicious device near the center.

Fitzgerald said Ankeny police were contacted. So was the Secretary of State’s office was for protocols on how to proceed. 


Would-be voters were sent to other polling places. Fitzgerald said all votes previously cast at the location were still legitimate.

Ankeny, Iowa police bomb squad member prepares to investigate after suspicious device was found at poling center for city special election on March 2, 2021.


At 12:12 p.m., police said the area was safe and reopened the center for voting.

No other polling sites were thought to be in danger.

Fitzgerald said it’s believed to be an isolated incident.

The federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives was investigating.

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