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Albert Lea Explosion Prompts FBI-Involved Investigation

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – An explosion in the basement of an Albert Lea home over the weekend prompted an investigation involving the FBI and of what authorities believed to be bomb-making components.

The explosion happened just after midnight, early Monday morning, in a home on 18115 Pelican Road and seriously injured the homeowner, who was mixing components to make a bomb, the Freeborn County Sheriff's Office said. An ambulance brought the owner, 48-year-old Ronald Rofshus, to the Hennepin County Medical Center for treatment. His condition is not known.

Later on Monday, a detective observed several items that he believed were components for making bombs, the sheriff's office said. The Bloomington Police Department Bomb Squad then responded to the scene, gathered information, found "firearm components that were beyond their scope of expertise," and contacted the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms to assist in the investigation.

During the afternoon and evening, the bomb squad used a robot to gather to explosive components and detonate them outside the home. Some of the components were detonated at a remote site, the sheriff's office said.

Authorities are still investigating and say no decisions have been made regarding criminal charges.

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