St. Paul man charged with setting off pipe bomb, damaging 2 vehicles; said he was ‘livid’ over dad’s ‘desecrated’ ashes

A man charged Thursday with setting off a pipe bomb in St. Paul in June that damaged two vehicles told police it was intended for the vehicle of a man he was “livid” with because he “desecrated” his father’s ashes by pouring them onto the ground, according to a criminal complaint.

Officers responded to a possible pipe bomb explosion at 1:12 p.m. June 13 on York Avenue between Kennard and Hazelwood streets on the Greater East Side.

A Ford Ranger was parked on the north side of York and a Chevrolet Suburban on the south side. The Ranger had damage to the driver’s side and the Suburban’s rear driver’s side glass panel was shattered.

Officers saw burn marks on the asphalt between the vehicles, and found a pipe with a cap on the end. Witnesses and video cameras in the area documented a sedan approaching, a male’s arm reaching out the front driver’s side and the vehicle speeding away. Smoke was seen near the driver’s side of the Ranger and then there was an explosion.

By enhancing video, police were able to identify the license plate of the suspect vehicle and learned Christopher William Kulak, 45, of St. Paul, is the vehicle’s primary driver, the complaint said.

The owner of the damaged Ranger told police that she heard the pipe bomb was intended for a 52-year-old man who frequents her address and drove a Ranger.

After police arrested Kulak on Tuesday, he told investigators he’d made and deployed the pipe bomb, according to the complaint. He said the bomb was intended for the vehicle of the 52-year-old, who he said had broke into his trailer and poured out his father’s ashes.

Kulak said he bought a pipe and manufactured a bomb, lit the fuse and tossed it near a truck he believed was the man’s, the complaint said.

The Ramsey County attorney’s office charged Kulak with negligently causing an explosive device or incendiary device to be discharged while acting with gross disregard for human life or property, a felony.

He is scheduled to make his first court appearance in the case Friday. An attorney wasn’t listed for him in the court record as of Thursday afternoon.

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