Two Virginia Tech football players were arrested after a small explosive device was detonated in Blacksburg Sunday night, resulting in their suspension from the team.
Walk-ons Joshua Trimble, 20, and Brian Rody, 19, were charged with manufacturing and detonating an explosive device, according to a news release, a Class 5 felony.
Police responded to the 1600 block of Patrick Henry Drive at 8:30 p.m. Sunday in reference to a report of an explosion near an occupied apartment, Blacksburg Lt. Steve Taylor said.
No one was injured in the incident, according to the release. Taylor said he could not comment on the type of the device or the reason it was detonated.
Jimmy Turk, who is representing both Trimble and Rody, said the incident involved a soda bottle and was “simply one of those pranks.”
“It’s just a little soda bottle, and you put aluminum foil in it along with a little toilet bowl cleaner,” Turk said. “It makes a boom and blows up.”
Turk said the two men were playing a prank on one of their female friends. After the bottle blew up, someone else in the apartment complex called the police.
“They both admitted to it and were very cooperative with the police,” Turk said. “They certainly did not understand the seriousness of what they could be charged with.”
Trimble and Rody were released from Montgomery County Jail this morning on $2,500 secured bonds.
Turk said he hopes to “get a speedy resolution” and avoid felony convictions.
“I’ve met with both of them. They both seem to be very fine young men and very good students,” Turk said. “Neither one of them has been in any kind of trouble before.”
Per University Policy 1035, any student-athlete charged with a felony is suspended indefinitely from athletic participation until the charge is dropped or otherwise resolved. If either player is convicted of a felony, it would result in immediate dismissal from the team. If the case is resolved without a felony conviction, any reinstatement would be up to athletic director Jim Weaver.
Both have preliminary hearings in Montgomery County General District Court in Christiansburg set for Jan. 24 at 2 p.m., making it unlikely either would be available for Virginia Tech’s game against Rutgers in the Russell Athletic Bowl on Dec. 28 in Orlando.
Trimble, a redshirt freshman linebacker from Ashburn, played in 11 games this year, getting most of his work as a special teams gunner. He made 13 tackles and recovered a fumble on a muffed punt against Florida State.
Rody, a quarterback also from Ashburn, joined the team in 2011. He redshirted last season and has worked on the scout team this year.
It’s the second straight season Virginia Tech has had legal trouble in advance of the bowl game. Kicker Cody Journell was arrested in connection with a home invasion last December, charged with breaking and entering.
He had those charges reduced to misdemeanor trespassing in the spring and rejoined the team over the summer after completing his community service.
NRV cops and courts reporter Melissa Powell and Andy Bitter contributed to this report.