For Immediate Release
ATF Issues $5,000 Reward Related to Rural Explosives Bunker Burglary
WAHPETON, N.D. – The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), in coordination with the Richland County Sheriff’s Office, announces a reward of up to $5,000 for information related to the theft of several display fireworks from a rural Richland County explosives bunker.
Matrix Fireworks, a federal explosives licensee operating out of Wahpeton, discovered the theft in early January when inspecting rural bunkers. After a reconciliation of inventory with an ATF industry operations investigator, approximately $23,000 worth of fireworks were found missing.
The missing fireworks are classified as display fireworks – they are not commercial fireworks for sale to the public. These explosive devices are typically used in large scale shows under the supervision of a trained pyrotechnician. These large-scale devices can contain sensitive high explosives which presents a public safety risk if mishandled or detonated inappropriately.
“There is a public safety concern given the potential for misuse of these explosives,” said ATF Special Agent in Charge William McCrary, of the St. Paul Field Division. “Our hope is that someone who knows about this theft will do the right thing and report what they know to avoid anyone being hurt from an accidental or nefarious explosives incident.”
The missing explosives were completely assembled with packaging labelled “Matrix Fireworks.”
Anyone with information about this incident, the identification of the individuals involved, or which can lead to the recovery of the missing items is asked to contact ATF. Call 1-888-ATF-TIPS (1-888-283-8477) or email ATFTips@atf.gov. For those providing information, include as many details as possible relating to the incident or location of the stolen items.
Tips may be reported anonymously. If a reward is sought, a name and contact information must be provided in the report. To be eligible for the reward, information provided must lead to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for the burglary or in the recovery of the missing fireworks.
This case is being investigated by ATF along with the Richland County Sheriff’s Office and the North Dakota Bureau of Criminal Investigation.
ATF is the federal law enforcement agency with jurisdiction involving explosives and regulates the explosives industry. For more information about ATF, go to www.atf.gov or follow @ATFHQ on Twitter. Follow @ATFStPaul on Twitter for ATF news in North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, and Wisconsin.