Housekeeper Finds Bomb in Teen's Bedroom, Takes It to Police

Thursday, 09 May 2013 08:48 AM

By Alexandra Ward

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An Arizona teen was arrested Tuesday after a housekeeper found a bomb in his bedroom, police said.

Joshua Prater, 18, was charged with misconduct involving weapons and possession of a prohibited weapon after a bomb squad determined the device discovered was in fact an active improvised explosive device.

According to a police report, the housekeeper came across a device with wires sticking out of it along with other suspicious materials during her regular cleaning rounds at Prater's Tempe, Ariz., home Tuesday. She took the device to a Tempe fire station, which alerted the local bomb squad.

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"They had it X-rayed, they saw it was a valid IED. It was something that wasn't big, but could cause serious injuries and the death of someone," Tempe Police Sgt. Mike Pooley told MyFOXPhoenix.com. "There was a fuse that was coming out from the device which would be how you light it and it would cause the fuse to go in there and explode. The bomb was ready to go. It was active. All it needed was the trigger."

Police disabled the bomb and returned to search Prater's bedroom, where they found other materials used for making explosives. The Marcos de Niza High School senior was then placed under arrest.

Prater's friends and family, who described him as a straight-"A" student headed for the University of Arizona next year, were stunned by Tuesday's events.

"I've known him since he came home from the hospital," neighbor Francine Moore told azfamily.com. "His mother always said what a good student he is, so this is really surprising."

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Prater reportedly admitted to building the IED, but said he did it eight years ago and didn't know if was filled with explosive powder, according to a police report. His parents apparently told police he built the bomb with friends, MyFOXPhoenix.com reported.

Prater is scheduled to appear in court May 15.

Related stories:

Cameron D'Ambrosio: Facebook Bombing Brag Brings Terror Charge

NJ Train Explosives Suspect Says Devices Were Fireworks, Not Bombs

Suspect Charged in Hospital with Boston Marathon Bombing

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