What started as the cops coming to check on the plants turned into so much more. MyStateline

David Vowels who lives in the 600 block of Valley View Drive in Pecatonica, Illinois received a visit from the Illinois State Police SWAT and the Stateline Area Narcotics Team this week.

David had a sophisticated marijuana grow that included:

  • Nine cannabis plants
  • A Garage with a workstation area with items for cannabis trimmings
  • Scale
  • Baggies

It's the other object they found that was concerning, a pipe bomb. So with the Illinois State Police SWAT and SLANT there, the next step was calling in the Winnebago County Bomb Squad AND Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).

There was a pipe bomb and enough material and parts to make this thing go boom.

Charges against David Vowels include:

Delivery of Cannabis between 30-500 grams

Production of between 5 and 20 Cannabis Plants


Possession of an Explosive, Incindiary Device

Manufacture of Explosives

Officers stated that Mr Vowels told his girlfriend as the authorities arrived:

 “They are just here to check out the plants.”  - David Vowels

Little did Mr. Vowels know, the search of his home would lead to a much bigger situation. This is referred to as an Improvised Explosive Device which is defined by the ATF as:

Improvised explosive devices constructed from various objects are prohibited and extremely dangerous. These include pipe bombs, which are usually made from steel pipes that contain an explosive mixture with a fuse sticking out. These devices are used during criminal acts and can cause bodily harm and damage to property. - ATF

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