North Texas Homeowner Discovers Live Artillery Shell in Yard

Bomb squad officer
Bomb squad officer | Image by MattGush/Getty Images

The discovery of a live artillery shell in a North Texas backyard forced the evacuation of several homes in the neighborhood.

Police responded to a call just before 4:28 p.m. on Thursday from a man claiming he found a missile-shaped object while digging in his yard. He told police the object, buried in the 1300 block of Circle Drive in Duncanville, was possibly an explosive.

Given the nature of the find, law enforcement directed the resident to exit his house immediately. Once on the scene, they called in the services of the Dallas Police Department’s bomb squad while Duncanville Fire Department medics remained nearby in case they were needed.

Around 6:20 p.m., the Dallas Police Department’s bomb squad arrived. An x-ray was performed, and authorities concluded the object was indeed explosive. In fact, it was a live artillery shell.

“Through consultation with the Dallas Police Department’s Bomb Squad, it was recommended that the United States Air Force’s Explosive Ordnance Disposal take possession of the live ordnance,” Duncanville police stated following the discovery, per WFAA.

The U.S. Air Force’s “Explosive Ordnance Disposal” detachment responded to the incident and assumed responsibility for the scene. The Duncanville Police Department said it did not believe there was any threat to public safety. It is currently unclear what followed, but there have been no reports of the artillery shell exploding.

The man who called the police told them the previous owner of his house was a military veteran. He said he suspects the former owner may have buried the shell years back. While unusual, it is far from the first time a homeowner has made a novel discovery.

Vincent Marcello found a cemetery dating back to the 1700s while digging a hole for a new pool in his yard in New Orleans in 2011. Upon final inspection, 13 caskets were found buried.

In 2012, while installing solar panels on his home in Los Angeles, a man found over a hundred thousand dollars worth of cannabis. He saw the marijuana after opening an underground access vault for inspection.

A couple in California found a nuclear fallout shelter in their home, which they had purchased in 2013. The shelter, accessible through a nearly 15-foot ladder, was in pristine condition and dated back to the 1960s.

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