Firefighters extinguish improvised bomb near Colo. fire station; man arrested

A Boulder firefighter reported the device to be a road flare that had been taped to a foot-long propane cannister


Mitchell Byars
Daily Camera, Boulder, Colo.

BOULDER, Colo. — A man has been arrested after he reportedly taped a road flare to a propane tank, lit it and threw it at people outside a Boulder fire station.

Mark Stephen Szyperek, 58, was arrested Monday on suspicion of four counts of attempted first-degree assault with a deadly weapon, fourth-degree arson and possession of explosives.

Mark Stephen Szyperek was arrested on suspicion of four counts of attempted first-degree assault with a deadly weapon, fourth-degree arson and possession of explosives, after reportedly throwing an improvised explosive at people outside a Boulder fire station.
Mark Stephen Szyperek was arrested on suspicion of four counts of attempted first-degree assault with a deadly weapon, fourth-degree arson and possession of explosives, after reportedly throwing an improvised explosive at people outside a Boulder fire station. (Photo/Boulder County Sheriff’s Office)

According to an arrest affidavit, police were called at 6:49 p.m. Monday to a grassy area just west of a Boulder fire station at 1585 30th St.

There, witnesses told police Szyperek had thrown some sort of flaming device at them before firefighters were able to put the device out.

Police spoke to a firefighter who said the device was a road flare that had been taped to a foot-long propane canister. The firefighter said that had the flare not been extinguished in time, it could have produced a serious explosion.

The witnesses and firefighters at the station said they were familiar with Szyperek, as he lived in the area behind the station. Firefighters told police Szyperek had been throwing rocks at the station the day before.

One firefighter also said he heard Szyperek say he was going to kill one of the other people in the area at the time the device was thrown.

Szyperek was located at a nearby grocery store and arrested without incident.

He remains in custody at the Boulder County Jail on $10,000 bond as he awaits a formal filing of charges on Thursday.

Szyperek has prior convictions for trespassing, escape from custody and criminal mischief, as well as numerous pending misdemeanor cases in Boulder County on misdemeanor charges including theft, criminal mischief, trespassing, tampering, menacing and harassment.

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(c)2021 the Daily Camera (Boulder, Colo.)

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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