OAKLAND — Shortly after 11:30 a.m., state police blasted open a suspected pipebomb at St. Theresa’s Catholic Church. The capped pipe was not a pipebomb, but was created to look like one, according to Sgt. Ken Grimes of the state Fire Marshal’s Office.

The Maine State Police special services bomb team had been investigating what appeared to be a pipebomb found on the steps of the closed Oakland church.

Shortly before the explosion, Grimes shouted “Fire in the hole!”

Earlier in the morning, Oakland police Capt. Rick Stubbert said all the houses within sight of the church were evacuated. During that time, the police-controlled robot had rolled up to the church steps and was photographing the device.

This story will be updated.

 

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OAKLAND — The Maine State Police special services bomb team is investigating what appears to be a pipebomb found on the steps of St. Theresa’s Catholic Church.

The bomb team is sending a remote-controlled robot to examine the device.

Stubbert said, “It is fashioned to look like a pipebomb.” The device is capped on both ends and painted gray, the same color as the church’s steps.

Police have cordoned off several blocks around Church Street and evacuated all the nearby houses, according to the Oakland Police Department.