School Closings & Delays

Woman Accused of Risking Explosion at Apartment Building

SCRANTON -- A woman was wheeled from her apartment on a stretcher Thursday morning in Scranton. Police believe she might have been trying to blow up the place.

Police in Scranton had been searching for Patricia Martinez since Wednesday night after they found her apartment filled with so much natural gas they feared the entire building could explode.

On Thursday, officers found Martinez right back where it all began.

Police believe Patricia Martinez broke into her own apartment at Skyview Park Apartments sometime overnight. They took her into custody there Thursday morning.

Police don't know what Martinez intended to do but the results could have been deadly.

EMTs wheeled Martinez from her apartment in Scranton, the same place police believe she may have tried to blow up the day before.

After being treated at the hospital, Martinez will be charged with risking a catastrophe and reckless endangerment.

"I don't know, the lady, I don't know what's going on, the lady's crazy. She decided to open the gas," said Yaritza Rivera.

Rivera lives in the same building at Skyview Park Apartments. She showed us where Martinez lives and where natural gas flowed into the place for at least five hours Wednesday.

Rivera says she first smelled gas around 10 a.m. and finally told the apartment managers around 3 p.m.

The managers say they found Martinez's stove unplugged and the burner on high. Firefighters say a match, or even a flip of a light switch, could have caused the building to explode.

Fifteen people were home including, Rivera and two of her children.

"I feel so mad because there was supposed to be an explosion in my building, I don't know, I'm so mad," Rivera said.

Police told us that Martinez recently told management at the apartment complex that she wasn't going to be able to afford her rent and she could have been evicted.

Once she's out of the hospital, she will be arraigned on a felony charge and could wind up in jail.

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