Arrest made in beach pipe bomb hoax

18-year-old Victoria man may be charged with mischief

An 18-year-old Victoria man may be charged with mischief in relation to a pipe bomb incident which closed a section of Beach Drive for four hours in March.

On March 24, Oak Bay resident Tai Orser, his brother and cousins discovered what appeared to be a pipe bomb with a cell phone, nine volt battery and two wire leads attached. The boys contacted police who secured the area while members from the RCMP explosives disposal and technology section attended the scene to disable the device that did not detonate.

The remnants underwent forensic examination and the investigation led police to evidence that identified the owner of one of the items that was part of the pipe bomb hoax.

“There was a piece with a serial number on it, and from that item used to build the device, we were able to trace it back to the owner,” said Oak Bay Chief Constable Mark Fisher.

On May 16, Oak Bay Police Department investigators located and interviewed the 18-year-old Victoria man. During the interview the suspect admitted responsibility for creating the hoax bomb and throwing it in the ocean near the public beach, said Fisher.

“He built it and decided he wanted to dispose of it and didn’t know what to do,” Fisher added. The young man then decided to get rid of the device by throwing it into the ocean near where it washed up on March 24. “He thought it was the safest way to get rid of it,” he said.

The 18-year-old, who cannot be identified as he has yet to be charged, admitted his guilt to Oak Bay officers, “once presented with the evidence,” Fisher said. Criminal charges of mischief against the man have been forwarded to the Crown Counsel for consideration.The young man has no previous criminal record, Fisher added.