BAYONNE, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — Two New Jersey men accused of causing explosions at an apartment building appeared in court on Monday.
As CBS 2’s Derricke Dennis reported, police said Christopher Ziobro, 21, and Ghaias Mirza, 18, were allegedly in Ziobro’s third-floor apartment on West 33rd Street in Bayonne, when they allegedly dropped their makeshift bomb on the fire escape and it ended up on the ground.
Ziobro and Mirza carried out their plot “specifically by making a Drano bomb which consisted of bottles containing the works — liquid toilet bowl cleanser in a small Reynolds Wrap tin foil,” Hudson County Judge Margaret Marley said in court.
The incident resulted in two deafening booms, neighbors said.
“When it first happened, I didn’t know what it was, and then when I heard the second blast because it was only five feet over because his floor is my ceiling,” said neighbor Robert Dunne. “It was nerve-wracking, with everything going on in the world now.”
The incident, of course, happened just five days after the Boston Marathon bombings gripped the nation.
In court, Ziobro appeared via closed-circuit television, while Mirza appeared in person. And Mirza’s attorney said it was all much ado about nothing.
“Really, it’s a matter of horseplay between a couple of kids,” said attorney Jeffrey Garrigan.
But after the massive emergency response from the Jersey City Bomb Squad and members of a Federal Joint Terrorism Task force, prosecutors charged Ziobro and Mirza with possessing a destructive device, recklessly causing danger of death from bodily injury, and an upgraded charge of risking widespread damage.
The Boston Marathon bombings, where three people were killed and more than 180 were injured, was on everyone’s minds.
“Obviously the timing is horrendous, with respect to what he did. But it’s nothing more than setting off something that amounted to an M-80,” Garrigan said. “Again, it was a stupid prank the kids were involved with, and, unfortunately, with the nature of what’s been going on, it got blown up to what it is today.”
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