This is news that is not reported very often, and when it is not so close to home. We hear of this type of thing in other countries, and think that for some reason we are immune—well think again as it would seem an individual in North Carolina was in possession of a weapon of mass destruction. You read that right—a weapon of mass destruction.
In what is being termed a joint effort by the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation (SBI), the North Carolina Department of Public Safety Adult Corrections (DPS) and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF), the Cherokee County Sheriff's Office announced on Facebook Thursday that a North Carolina man had been arrested for allegedly possessing what law enforcement is terming as a weapon of mass destruction.
Owen Gregory Dean, 44, was arrested after several law enforcement divisions searched his resident, based on a tip they had received, located in Murphy. When examined, a blasting cap was discovered to be residence, and the bomb squad was called in. The cap was successful dispatched safely, and no casualties were reported. Both the sheriff’s office and officials have not disclosed the name of the individual who reported Dean.
Blasting caps are used as detonators and ignitors in such larger explosives as both TNT and dynamite. They are available in a variety of forms, both electric and non-electric. Under current North Carolina law, blasting caps are considered to be “powerful explosives” resulting in the categorization of “weapons of mass destruction.” The categorization is used if they are felt to have been designed for intent to use in converting any device into an explosive or an incendiary.
Sheriff Derrick Palmer made the statement: “This had a huge potential for disaster. Explosives must always be properly handled and stored.”
The sheriff’s office received many tart replies to the Facebook post about the arrest, going on to argue that the blasting caps were actually the least of law enforcement's concerns.
One such reply stated: “One blasting cap? What a crock! And M80 firecracker would do more harm!”
Dean was reportedly still on probation and was arrested and detained at the Cherokee County Detention Center on the charges of possession of a weapon of mass destruction. He is reported as being held there on a $15,000 bond. His court appearance is scheduled for Thursday, May 9th.
So, what’s the verdict—you decide.
Is this type of news going to become more and more commonplace from here on out?