Authorities: Woman killed from explosion at Iowa gender reveal party

Authorities say a woman in Iowa was killed from an explosion at a gender reveal party.

News 12 Staff

Oct 28, 2019, 11:38 AM

Updated 1,665 days ago

Share:

KNOXVILLE, Iowa (AP) - Authorities say an Iowa family's attempt at a gender reveal party for a soon-to-be-born baby went horribly wrong when a homemade device that was meant to discharge colored powder instead exploded like a pipe bomb, killing a 56-year-old relative.
The Marion County Sheriff's office said Pamela Kreimeyer died instantly when debris struck her head Saturday before flying another 432 feet and landing in a nearby field in rural Knoxville, about 35 miles southeast of Des Moines.
Kreimeyer was 45 feet from the device when it exploded.
Family members had been experimenting with explosives in the hopes of posting a colorful announcement on social media, authorities said. They welded a metal cylinder to a stand and packed it with gunpowder that they thought would send the colored baby powder aloft. But authorities say tape covering the top of the cylinder caused it to detonate like a pipe bomb.
Law enforcement officials expressed condolences to the family and warned about the dangers of using explosive materials.
"This family got together for what they thought was going to be a happy event with no intent for anyone to get hurt," Sheriff Jason Sandholdt said in a statement. "What ended up happening was that Pamela Kreimeyer, a wife, mother and grandmother, was killed by a piece of metal where a metal stand gunpowder and colored powder were involved. This is a reminder that anytime someone mixes these things there is a high potential for serious injury or death."
Using explosives to reveal a baby's gender is rare, but a similar incident caused a major wildfire in Arizona in 2017, when an off-duty border patrol agent accidentally set off a blaze that burned 73 square miles of mostly Forest Service land.
The blaze forced about 200 people out of their homes and cost an estimated $8 million in damage and firefighting expenses. The agent, Dennis Dickey, fired a rifle at a homemade target that exploded, sending a blue substance into the air. The explosion started a grassfire that spread quickly.
Dickey pleaded guilty in September 2018 to a federal misdemeanor charge of starting a fire without a permit. He was sentenced the following month to five years of probation and was ordered to make an initial payment of $100,000 in restitution and monthly payments of $500.
(Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


More from News 12
0:23
Police: Haddonfield man faces charges for arson, stalking and vandalism

Police: Haddonfield man faces charges for arson, stalking and vandalism

2:07
Mostly cloudy skies and dry conditions in New Jersey

Mostly cloudy skies and dry conditions in New Jersey

0:17
Authorities: George Washington Bridge climber in custody

Authorities: George Washington Bridge climber in custody

1:42
Jersey Creators Market event in Jersey City brings street designers from all over Garden State

Jersey Creators Market event in Jersey City brings street designers from all over Garden State

1:40
Red Bank's Broad Walk summer festival returns to downtown

Red Bank's Broad Walk summer festival returns to downtown

2:08
Residents get rid of junk during citywide ‘Love Newark, Keep It Clean’ campaign

Residents get rid of junk during citywide ‘Love Newark, Keep It Clean’ campaign

1:19
Bus catches fire on Garden State Parkway near Wall Township

Bus catches fire on Garden State Parkway near Wall Township

0:23
Prosecutor: Plainfield man sentenced to 5 years in prison for Bridgewater car crash

Prosecutor: Plainfield man sentenced to 5 years in prison for Bridgewater car crash

1:43
CDC urges people to get vaccinated amid resurgence of mpox

CDC urges people to get vaccinated amid resurgence of mpox

0:31
Police: Jersey City man arrested following pursuit spanning 2 counties

Police: Jersey City man arrested following pursuit spanning 2 counties

2:37
‘We’re asking to fight.’ Parents, students call on officials to save Wayne Catholic school from closing

‘We’re asking to fight.’ Parents, students call on officials to save Wayne Catholic school from closing

2:05
36th Annual Belmar Seafood Festival to take place this weekend at Silver Lake Park

36th Annual Belmar Seafood Festival to take place this weekend at Silver Lake Park

0:25
Prosecutor: Human remains found in 1 of 3 cars submerged in Cooper River in Pennsauken

Prosecutor: Human remains found in 1 of 3 cars submerged in Cooper River in Pennsauken

0:18
Newark police seek public’s help identifying package thief

Newark police seek public’s help identifying package thief

0:21
Officials: 3 people, including 2 officers, injured in car crash in Jersey City

Officials: 3 people, including 2 officers, injured in car crash in Jersey City

0:41
Jersey Proud: Rowan College students hold fashion show at Cherry Hill Mall with their designs

Jersey Proud: Rowan College students hold fashion show at Cherry Hill Mall with their designs

0:15
Police: Newton hospital temporarily put on lockdown amid reports of armed person

Police: Newton hospital temporarily put on lockdown amid reports of armed person

2:26
First full week of Sen. Menendez’s federal corruption trial comes to a close

First full week of Sen. Menendez’s federal corruption trial comes to a close

2:24
New Jersey man dubbed ‘most frequent flyer’ hits 24 million miles in the sky

New Jersey man dubbed ‘most frequent flyer’ hits 24 million miles in the sky

3:17
Peapack-Gladstone residents, business owners split on decision to euthanize geese in borough

Peapack-Gladstone residents, business owners split on decision to euthanize geese in borough