3 are charged in theft of explosive devices, gun Items allegedly stolen from home of man who had died a day earlier

November 06, 1996|By TaNoah Morgan | TaNoah Morgan,SUN STAFF

County police arrested three South County men Monday on charges of breaking into the home of a Lothian man the day after he was killed in a motorcycle accident, stealing a box containing explosive devices, a gun and ammunition and hiding it in a house in Bowie.

Charged with burglary and theft were Mark Nicholson, 19, of the 400 block of Friendship Road in Friendship; his cousin Rock Nicholson, 18, of the 6400 block of Solomon's Island Road in Tracy's Landing; and Jeromy Smith, 23, of the 7100 block of Lake Shore Drive in Rose Haven.

Smith and Rock Nicholson remained in the county detention center on $100,000 bond and $25,000 bond, respectively. Bail information for Mark Nicholson was not available.

Sheree Mixell, spokeswoman for the federal Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms, said yesterday that federal charges had not been filed, pending an investigation.

Authorities in Bowie evacuated 50 nearby homes for nearly seven hours Monday after the box was examined in front of a house in the 12500 block of Saber Lane in Bowie.

Charles Mason, 55, of Lothian, was killed Oct. 6 when he was thrown from his motorcycle on Route 4 near Bridge Hill Road. He was struck by two trucks as he lay in the road, according to state police.

The next night, thieves broke into Mason's house in the 1500 block of Hill Road and stole the box containing the explosive C-4 and other items, according to police spokesman Vaughn Dykes.

Anne Arundel police identified a suspect in the burglary and took him to the Southern District station for questioning about noon Monday. Dykes said the suspect confessed to stealing the explosives and hiding the box at his girlfriend's house in Bowie.

Police told the suspect to call his girlfriend and tell her to put the box in front of the house, where he would pick it up, Dykes said.

Anne Arundel officers and ATF agents went to the house about 2 p.m., found the box and summoned Prince George's County bomb squad. The Anne Arundel officers also learned that two men whom the suspect had implicated, had been at the house moments earlier.

The officers used the suspect's girlfriend's telephone to page the men, who returned and were arrested.

When the Prince George's bomb squad arrived, its officers evacuated the street and began searching the box. They found quantities of smokeless flash, black powders and pyrotechnic fusing, which can be used in fireworks and pipe bombs, and a gun and ammunition.

Pub Date: 11/06/96

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