LUZERNE COUNTY -- Police and the bomb squad were scrambling all day, concerned about what they call “weapons of mass destruction” being manufactured in a residential neighborhood. Now one man is facing serious charges.
It all started when police in Luzerne County were called to the intersection of Blackman Street and Company Row Saturday to check on the welfare of a toddler. The residents turned investigators away.
A short time later, a car was stopped on Interstate 81 near Ashley. Detectives said they found 30 pounds of powerful explosives inside belonging to Clayton Knorr.
Police then returned to the double block home on Blackman Street and the garage behind it. There they reported finding more explosives, materials that can be used to make pipe bombs and dynamite, as well as tools and chemicals that can be used to make meth.
The bomb squad detonated the explosives in a safe area near Wilkes-Barre.
One neighbor says she heard the occasional bang and pop coming from the house on Blackman Street, but was shocked by the criminal investigation.
“I came home to walk my dog and when I saw that I said, ‘What is going on?’” said Jean Hudack.
Meanwhile police were on the lookout for Knorr who lives next door to the crime scene.
Police say he was found along with a silver SUV on Oliver Street in Swoyersville and was arrested after a foot chase.
Authorities later evacuated the area as the bomb squad was called in to check for explosives.
“Police knocked on the door. They said this is a voluntary evacuation. There were amounts of dynamite, possibly in the car,” said Barbara James of Swoyersville.
No explosives were found in the SUV in Swoyersville.
Police say Knorr was taken to the hospital to be checked out, but they expect he will be arraigned Sunday on charges that could include possessing or making weapons of mass destruction.