Texas man found with explosive device

2013-05-10 21:32
(Picture: AP)

(Picture: AP)

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Dallas - A paramedic in West, Texas, has been arrested for possession of an explosive device, a federal official said on Friday, but it was not immediately clear whether there was a connection to a deadly explosion last month at a fertiliser plant in the town.

Texas officials also announced on Friday that they had opened a criminal investigation into the 17 April explosion that killed 14 people and injured about 200 others.

The man arrested was Bryce Reed, said Franceska Perot, a spokesperson for the US Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

A source familiar with the matter said it was not clear that the arrest was linked to the blast at West Fertiliser.

"I don't know that they're making that connection," said the source, who asked not to be identified because they were not authorised to speak to the news media.

An employee at McLennan County Jail, who asked not to be identified, said Reed, 31, was brought to the jail at 02:00 and handed over to federal agents at 08:00.

A call to Reed's cellphone went straight to voice-mail on Friday.

Reed's wife, Brittany, said in a text message on Friday that she could not comment.

Cause of the explosion

The state fire marshal's office has said that ammonium nitrate stored at the plant detonated in the explosion, but that the cause of the fire and blast were still being investigated.

Bryce and Brittany Reed told Reuters last month that they were listening to music at their home when they heard the town's siren and jumped into their truck to warn people nearby.

"Get your kids and go!" the couple said they yelled at residents of an apartment complex near the plant.

They said they were about 46 to 69m from the plant when the blast rocked their car.

Bryce Reed said that his home was destroyed and that he lost his best friend, volunteer firefighter Cyrus Reed, in the blast.

The two are not related, but were so close they considered each other brothers, Bryce Reed said at the time.

"There's no words to convey the magnitude of this incident," Bryce Reed he said then.

Read more on:    us  |  texas explosion

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