A federal grand jury has indicted a Joplin man in relation to a pipe bomb discovered at a residence on Money Island in late August.

TULSA — United States Attorney Trent Shores announced Monday that a federal grand jury returned an indictment against Richard C. Cole, 36, of Joplin, Missouri, charging him with possession of an unregistered destructive device discovered at a residence in Afton, Oklahoma.

According to court documents, on August 25, 2018, Delaware County Sheriff’s deputies were called to Cole’s apartment unit, when a suspected improvised explosive device was discovered by the landlord. The Oklahoma Highway Patrol Bomb Squad was contacted, and upon arrival, they observed two, one pound canisters containing “mixed Tannerite” which is a binary explosive. The bomb squad also found two boxes of ammunition, along with an explosive device commonly referred to as a “pipe bomb” in an ammunition container. The explosive experts then rendered the device safe.

U.S. Attorney Trent Shores stated, “Residents of Afton were unknowingly placed in harm’s way when this pipe bomb was illegally created. Thankfully, it did not detonate. The immediate reporting and swift action taken by law enforcement potentially saved lives.”

Agencies involved in the investigation and arrest included the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, the Oklahoma Highway, and the Delaware County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant United States Attorney Robert T. Raley is prosecuting the case. AUSA Raley is the National Security Anti-Terrorism (ATAC) Prosecutor for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Northern District of Oklahoma

A return of an indictment is a method of informing a defendant of alleged federal crimes, which the government would need to prove beyond a reasonable doubt. Defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.