Incident Summary:

6/21/1970: Suspected members of the Black Panther Party are believed to have set a booby-trap package underneath a bridge in Iowa, United States, intended to kill Des Moines Police Officers. An anonymous caller tipped the police about the package. When the police arrived, it only failed to explode due to a sliver of wood blocking the trigger.



United States

North America

region/u.s. state:


Des Moines

Location Details:
Des Moines Freeway

Attack Information
Type of Attack (more) Bombing/Explosion
Successful Attack? (more) No
Target Information (more)
Target Type: Police
Name of Entity Des Moines Police Department
Specific Description Des Moines Police responding to an anonymous phone call
Nationality of Target United States
Additional Information
Hostages No
Ransom No
Property Damage No
Weapon Information
Type Sub-type
Explosives Dynamite/TNT
Weapon Details
Two-and-one-half by sixteen inch sticks of dynamite along with nuts, bolts, nails, and metal brushes connected to a battery
Additional Information
Suicide Attack?No
Part of Multiple Incident?No
Criterion 1 (more) Yes
Criterion 2 (more) Yes
Criterion 3 (more) Yes
Additional Information On May 5th 1970, a large quantity of dynamite was stolen from Quick Supply, a dynamite supply warehouse in Ankeny Iowa. Police believed that the stolen dynamite was used by the Black Panthers in this attack as well as in four other incidents taking place in Iowa during May and June 1970 (197005130001, 197005220003, 197006130001, and 197006290001).
Perpetrator Group Information
Group Name Claimed Responsibility
Black Panthers (suspected) No
Perpetrator Statistics
Number of Perpetrators Unknown
Number of Captured Perpetrators Unknown
Casualty Information
Total Number of Casualties 0 Fatalities / 0 Injured
Total Number of Fatalities 0
Number of U.S. Fatalities 0
Number of Perpetrator Fatalities 0
Total Number of Injured 0
Number of U.S. Injured 0
Number of Perpetrators Injured 0
Committee on Internal Security House of Representatives, "Black Panther Party, Part 4," U.S. Government Printing Office, October-November, 1970.
Committee on Government Operations United States Senate, "Riots, Civil, and Criminal Disorders," U.S. Government Printing Office, August 6, 1970.
"Wood Sliver Saves Police From Bomb," Washington Post, June 23. 1970.