A long-running Mason City mystery might now be solved.
Wednesday afternoon, Mason City Police arrested Doran Maklenburg, 47, on three counts of unauthorized possession of an offensive weapon that they believe is connection with the loud booms that have been heard all across town.
"We’re extremely confident (of the connection) and it took awhile to get this evidence to the point we could make an arrest," Mason City Police Captain Mike McKelvey said. "Hopefully residents of Mason City will get a good night sleep now."
Court filings assert that Maklenburg "knowingly, and without authorization" possessed a bomb containing an unknown gas that could cause an incendiary explosion which qualifies it as "an offensive weapon." Possession of such a weapon is a Class D felony which is punishable by up to five years' imprisonment and a fine of between $750 and $7,500.
While the arrest was made on Wednesday, the court filing alleges that the precipitating incident occurred at 4:14 a.m. on Sept. 21. Maklenburg was jailed but has since been bonded out according to McKelvey.
"If or when it goes to trial, people will see what we have," he said.
Over the course of the saga of the booms, residents around town have had a number of explanations for culprits as well as locations.
Some people would insist they only heard it in the southeast part of town, while others insisted it was farther north. Even the intensity of the boom isn't wholly agreed upon.
"In a couple of cases we have found that they have had a business or industrial cause, in one case we found one person who had made a homemade firework, and many of the rest we are unsure about," Mason City Police Chief Jeff Brinkley said in Dec. 2019.
The booms were a constant source of speculation on the North Iowa Rant & Rave Facebook page. On there, commenters mapped booms at or near: Ninth Street Southeast, North Madison Avenue, East Park, 12th Street Southeast, South Virginia Avenue, North Kentucky Avenue, the Southside McDonald's and the entire east side of town.
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Crime and courts news in September
Crime and courts news from the Globe Gazette this month:
Early Wednesday morning, Bill Clausen got a surprise phone call from the Mason City Police Department asking why his truck was parked haphazar…
Two women are facing drug charges after being caught with a quantity of methamphetamine during a traffic stop in Northwood on Saturday.
Mason City police have arrested a man they say is responsible for a vandalism spree that took place last month on the North End.
A North Iowa man is facing felony charges after stealing a vehicle and leading deputies on a high-speed chase last month.
A Mason City has been charged with harassment and contempt related to 15 incidents of violating a protective order.
The Mason City Police Department is investigating two shooting incidents that occurred over the weekend.
A North Iowa man is facing numerous charges after threatening and spitting on a female officer on Monday.
The Mason City Police Department arrested three men over Labor Day weekend, on separate charges of failing to comply with sex offender registr…
A North Iowa man living in the Beje Clark Residential Center correctional home in Mason City is facing multiple charges after sending sexually…
Jared McNett covers local government for the Globe Gazette. You can reach him at Jared.McNett@globegazette.com or by phone at 641-421-0527. Follow Jared on Twitter at @TwoHeadedBoy98.