Illinois High School Evacuated after Explosion

OREGON, Ill. (AP) - Police had three juveniles in custody Wednesday after two explosions outside Oregon High School led to the evacuation of the school's 600 students, authorities said.

No injuries were reported.

Oregon Police Chief Tom Miller said the initial explosions about 11 a.m. were of liter-sized plastic soft drink bottles filled with a homemade explosive. A subsequent search of the school building by city police and Ogle County sheriff's deputies turned up what appeared to be four pipe bombs, he said.

''Officers found three small pipe bombs in a student's book bag in a first-floor locker, and a larger one in a storage area on the second floor,'' Miller said. ''All four devices have been detonated by the Winnebago County Bomb Squad.''

By Wednesday afternoon, Miller said he felt the school building was safe but officers accompanied by bomb-sniffing dogs would continue an intensive search for several more hours.

''We just don't want to take any chances,'' he said.

Miller described the two bottle bombs as ''MacGyver devices,'' so-called after the once-popular television series that often featured improvised explosives and weapons. The chief said two juveniles were seen throwing the devices into a space next to the school's old gymnasium, and were quickly apprehended.

''We subsequently learned that a third juvenile was involved in bringing in the chemicals, so we apprehended him, too,'' Miller said.

No charges were filed as of Wednesday afternoon.

Oregon is 25 miles southwest of Rockford.

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