‘It’s concerning:’ $5K reward offered after explosions in New Berlin

NEW BERLIN -- The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives has offered a $5,000 reward for information related to "recent explosions" that led to the closure of Coffee Road and Woelfel Road beginning late Monday afternoon, Sept. 17. The first happened Saturday morning, Sept. 15, and the second happened Monday afternoon.

The New Berlin Fire Department was dispatched around 4:30 p.m. Monday. When officers arrived on the scene, they saw a frayed electrical wire and gray smoke coming from the ground beneath the wire. The New Berlin Police Department requested the assistance of We Energies, the ATF, the Milwaukee County Bomb Squad and the FBI to investigate.

Road closure due to police investigation on Coffee Rd. in New Berlin

Bob Stigler

"We just heard there was an explosion on the side of the road here," said Bob Stigler.

The bomb-like devices were found near Stigler's soybean and corn crops -- wires and remnants from the explosions.

"It's a huge puzzle piece, and we are in the process of putting the pieces together. We need the public's help,"  said Joel Lee, ATF.

The ATF has offered a $5,000 reward for information that leads to an arrest and conviction.

"Whatever it is, it's concerning," said Stigler.

Stigler pointed out how close the explosions were to underground gas pipelines. Perhaps the goal was to create even more damage. While no one was injured, Stigler said he would go into the fields this fall thinking about soybeans, corn and bombs.

"It's obviously something more serious than pranksters. You're kind of vulnerable," said Stigler.

Coffee Road was open in all directions as of about 2:30 p.m. Tuesday.

Those with information can dial 1-888-ATF-BOMB, email ATFTips@atf.gov or submit an anonymous tip through the ReportIt app which is available on Google Play and the Apple App Store, or by visiting www.reportit.com. When reporting, be sure to include as many details as possible and contact information for potential follow up if a reward is sought.