Wash. Police Bomb Squad Dispose of Nuclear Missile Parts Found in Garage

Feb. 6, 2024
Bellevue police were tipped off about an inert air-to-air rocket designed to carry a 1.5-kiloton nuclear warhead after someone called an Ohio museum offering to donate the munition.

A phone call to a museum about a potential donation led police to part of a former nuclear missile in a Bellevue garage, Washington officials reported.

The police bomb squad identified the inert munition as a Douglas AIR-2 Genie air-to-air rocket designed to carry a 1.5-kiloton nuclear warhead, the Bellevue Police Department said in a Feb. 2 news release. The rocket had no warhead.

An Air Force museum in Dayton, Ohio, contacted the department Wednesday, Jan. 31, to report that someone had called them offering to donate the rocket that belonged to a neighbor who had died, police said. The man said his neighbor bought it from an estate sale.

Officers and bomb squad experts responded the next day and found the rocket in the garage of the neighbor who had died, police said.

“Bomb squad members confirmed that the object was inert and contained no rocket fuel – essentially meaning that the item was an artifact with no explosive hazard,” police said.

Because the rocket was inert and the Air Force did not request its return, police left it with the neighbor to be restored for a museum display.

Bellevue is about 10 miles east of downtown Seattle.

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