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Press Release

Johnston Man Sentenced for Making a Destructive Device

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of Iowa

DES MOINES, IA – Chad Allen Williams, age 47, of Johnston, was sentenced Friday, June 3, 2022, to 60 months in federal prison for Making a Destructive Device and Unlawful Drug User in Possession of a Firearm. His term of imprisonment will be followed by three years of supervised release. Williams pled guilty to the charges on January 20, 2022.

According to court documents, Williams admitted to detonating homemade explosive devices on a public street in Ankeny on May 12 and June 7, 2021. A third explosive device was found in the same location on the morning of June 9, 2021. The device, which did not detonate in spite of apparent attempts to do so, was found to contain a significant amount of metallic shrapnel. With the assistance of neighbors and other community members, law enforcement worked together to trace the devices to Williams, and executed a search warrant at his Johnston residence on June 18, 2021.

As a result of the search warrant, Agents located controlled substances and items consistent with the manufacture of explosive devices, including the specific explosive devices located in Ankeny. Agents also seized a loaded Ruger, Model P89, nine-millimeter pistol in Williams’ vehicle. Subsequent to execution of the search warrant, Williams admitted to manufacturing and placing the explosive devices on the Ankeny street. Williams also admitted to being a user of methamphetamine, which disqualified him from the right to possess a firearm.

United States Attorney Richard D. Westphal of the Southern District of Iowa made the announcement. The Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, the Ankeny Police Department, the Iowa Department of Public Safety Intelligence Division, the Iowa State Fire Marshall, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation investigated the case. This case was prosecuted by the United States Attorney’s Offices for the Southern District of Iowa.


MacKenzie Tubbs

Updated June 7, 2022

Firearms Offenses