Man charged for bomb-like devices

June 24, 2008 4:16:21 PM PDT
A neighborhood in Rockland County is on edge after a man left two potentially explosive devices in a driveway. The entire neighborhood was evacuated. Now, the question is why were they left there? The devices looked like pipe bombs and were stuffed with nails or BBs. They were discovered outside a home in Pearl River. The suspect is now in jail in New City, facing serious charges.

All Cindy Speechly remembers thinking, looking out over her neighbor's house, is that she hoped nothing blew up before she, her mother and her brother could get to safety.

"The cop knocked on the door and said, 'You all have to leave right now,'" she said. "The bomb squad was here, taping off the roads."

Police first found what looked like a pipe bomb inside the garage of the Pearl River home. They found a second one in a nearby car.

"Both devices had fuses," Orange police lieutenant Jim Brown said. "One device had BBs glued to it, the other device had nails apparently glued to it."

Police say 31-year-old Patrick Mitchell had put together the devices, which were found to contain smoke powder. His uncle, with whom he lived, become alarmed.

"He had found what he believed to be bomb-making materials and devices in the house," Brown said.

A family member cleaning up at the house says Mitchell was "crying out for help," and the relative was just thankful no one was injured.

Mitchell, an electrician apprentice, faces charges of placing a false bomb and possession of fireworks. Police are trying to figure out why he made the devices.


STORY BY: Eyewitness News reporter Tim Fleischer