Aberdeen police arrest man for allegedly building bombs

A state patrol bomb squad removed several possible IEDs from the motel room.

A Grays Harbor resident was arrested by Aberdeen Police Department officers on Friday, Sept. 16, after claiming he had modified fireworks into improvised explosive devices.

Erik Cordell Brown, 51, was arrested and charged with felony possession of an incendiary device, according to an APD social media post.

At around 4:30 p.m. on Friday, the APD received a call from a mental health response team that a man was claiming he had modified fireworks into IEDs, according to the social media post. Responding officers saw what appeared to be IEDs in the man’s room at the Aberdeen Motel. The adjacent rooms were evacuated and Brown was detained, according to the social media post.

“Every once in a while, we get the occasional pipe bomb case,” said APD Lt. Andy Snodgrass in a phone interview. “This is not a common thing for us, but we have had dealings with the state patrol bomb squad.”

The Washington State Patrol Bomb Squad responded and removed several viable explosive devices from the room without incident, according to the social media post.

“I didn’t hear any major issues,” Snodgrass said. “They were on scene for a bit.”

Brown is being held at Grays Harbor County Jail on $100,000 bail. The case has been handed to the prosecutor’s office, according to the social media post. This appears to be an isolated incident and there should be no further threat to the public, Snodgrass said.

Snodgrass thanked citizens for reporting the suspicious activity.

“If you see something suspicious like that, call us,” Snodgrass said. “The citizens are our eyes and ears.”

Snodgrass also thanked Hoquiam police and the Grays Harbor County Sheriff’s Office deputies for assisting APD in handling calls, while Aberdeen officers were engaged at the scene of the IED call.

“We appreciate those departments stepping up and helping us out,” Snodgrass said.