Arlen McWain isn't very popular with his neighbors. In fact -- several say he's dangerous. Less than a week after moving into this Barre apartment building -- the 58 year old is charged with making destructive devices.
"Four brass tubes with green fuses sticking out of the sides. Three of the tubes measured approximately 2.25 inches in length. They had black electrical tape on the ends and then one was empty," said Kristin Wood, state attorney from the Washington County Department.
That's only a partial listing of what investigators say they recovered from his home Sunday -- after showing up with a search warrant. The day before two of McWain's neighbors say he gave them pipe bombs -- which they immediately turned over to police. McWain denied the allegations.
He says the explosives were for the Fourth of July -- and told police that he blew them up in a nearby brook. But that doesn't explain why police found bomb making material inside his apartment after the holiday -- or the countless mini explosions his neighbors report hearing. They told police they thought he was going to kill someone with the bombs.
McWain's neighbors did not want to talk to us on camera. They say they're too afraid of him. That's because this is not the first time McWain he allegedly been charged with possessing bombs. According to court documents in 1992 he served two years in a California prison for possessing explosive devices.
Prosecutors say if the bombs weren't enough of a public safety concern -- McWain has also threatened to kill his landlord and told the other tenants he owned guns and armour-piercing bullets that he wasn't afraid to use. Neighbors want him held -- but his lawyer argued 100-thousand dollar bail didn't fit the crime.
He's willing to abide by the conditions that he not abuse or harass any of the other tenants. He has no opposition to that. He has no desire to do that. Any material has been confiscated now that might have been cause for concern," said Maggie Vincent, Arlen McWain's lawyer.
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