Officials: Indicted Man Talked about Blowing Up VA Hospitals

DALLAS, S.D. -- A South Dakota man indicted for having homemade explosives including a pipe bomb at his house has been arrested in Denver, South Dakota Attorney General Marty Jackley's office said Wednesday.

Martin Rezac, 59, was indicted last week on three explosives-related felonies, and a report from the state Division of Criminal Investigation says Rezac's friend told a DCI agent that Rezac had routinely discussed blowing up Veterans Affairs hospitals.

The charges stem from authorities' visit to the Dallas, South Dakota, residence on Thanksgiving Day after a reported explosion, which blew out several windows and sent Rezac to the hospital, according to DCI reports filed in court.

Rezac was sent to a hospital in Gregory, and then transported to St. Paul, Minnesota, for treatment, according to a DCI agent's report. It isn't known when he was released from the hospital. Jackley spokeswoman Sara Rabern said an arrest warrant for Rezac didn't go out until Dec. 18.

DCI investigators were "overwhelmed" by the number of unknown chemicals at Rezac's home stored in mostly unlabeled jars, according to one of the reports. They also found a rudimentary explosives laboratory in the kitchen and a recipe for an unstable homemade explosive, the report said, after which authorities "backed out of the residence" and called the South Dakota National Guard.

DCI bomb squad members later removed a pipe bomb and a larger explosive device housed in a peanut butter jar.

Rezac's friend told a DCI agent that Rezac discussed blowing up VA hospitals "frequently," and that Rezac, when drinking alcohol, had made comments about being angry at VA personnel, according to an agent's report. The friend has watched Rezac make chemicals for explosives and said he believes Rezac is capable of potentially blowing up a VA facility, according to the investigative document.

A DCI agent's report says that Rezac told Gregory County Sheriff Tim Drey that he was making the bombs to kill Prairie dogs. Drey didn't immediately return a telephone message requesting comment.

It wasn't immediately clear if Rezac has legal representation. Denver police spokesman Doug Schepman confirmed the department arrested Rezac. But Schepman declined to provide any details about the arrest because he hadn't cleared it with South Dakota officials.

Rezac is being held by the Denver Sheriff Department.

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