SKOWHEGAN, Maine – Two teenage boys have been charged with setting off two homemade bombs inside a Wal-Mart filled with holiday shoppers, authorities said.
Hundreds of customers were evacuated from the store when the acid bombs detonated Saturday afternoon. At least eight people were treated for irritation to their eyes and throat or ringing in their ears, said Stephen McCausland, spokesman for the state Department of Public Safety.
The boys, both 15, were taken into custody after photos from the store's security cameras where shown on television newscasts.
Investigators said they had identified the boys after showing the photos to teenagers at a McDonald's. The parents of one of the boys also recognized them in the photos and met with investigators, said McCausland.
Both teens were charged with criminal use of explosives and released early Sunday morning to their parents.
Authorities said the teens had made three other explosive devices and placed one on the roof of a downtown business and two on the lawn of a residence. Those three bombs, none of which had detonated, were being retrieved by investigators, McCausland said.
A store manager said the Wal-Mart opened for business Sunday, and referred all questions to police.