Jan. 24 (UPI) -- A Nebraska couple's attempt at a creative baby "gender reveal" ended up earning them a sheriff's citation for setting off an explosive without a state permit.
Jon Sterkel, 26, said he and his wife, Ashley, wanted to do something unique for their baby "gender reveal" video on Facebook, so they used exploding targets he previously used without issue on their property west of Scottsbluff.
The video shows Sterkel shooting the target, which explodes and releases a cloud of blue chalk while he shouts, "It's a boy!"
The explosion resulted in multiple calls to the Scotts Bluff County Sheriff's Office from residents in Scottsbluff -- about 3 miles away -- about an explosion that some misidentified as a house exploding or a car engine blowing out.
Sterkel said he heard about the reports from the radio and called the sheriff's office to explain. He also posted an apology on Facebook.
"I would like to apologize for all of the confusion," he wrote. "This was just our way of announcing what gender our baby was."
The sheriff's office ticketed Sterkel for setting off an explosive without a state permit, a misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in jail and a fine of up to $1,000.
Sterkel said he hopes others can learn from his mistake.
"People need to follow the proper protocol," he told the Omaha World-Herald. "We never knew, and we've shot these for years. If you can go to a store and buy it, how in the world can you know it's illegal?"
"The explosives I bought are readily available in most department stores, and even most law enforcers I have spoken to are not aware that they are illegal," he told the BBC.
The baby is due June 16, but Sterkel said not to expect another explosive stunt.
"I think we'll do something a little more lower key," he said.