Crime

He threatened to detonate a dirty bomb if officers came to his home

Alan Jerome Rhodes
Alan Jerome Rhodes

A Perkinston man accused of making bombs who was found with assorted fighting weapons has admitted he had destructive devices on his property, federal court papers show.

Alan Rhodes, 52, had four destructive devices known as Tannerite, a commercial product used to make explosives for target shooting, an Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives agent has testified. Also found in the home were a short-barreled shotgun, swords, hatchets, handmade spears, fighting-type axes and a baseball bat with protruding nails.

Federal agents became involved Nov. 10 after Stone County deputies responded to a complaint that Rhodes had assaulted a woman and put a gun to her head, threatening to shoot her.

Rhodes told agents he could put a device at the end of the road and detonate it if law enforcement arrived, a document said. The four devices were inside the home along with fuses, metal pipes, blasting caps and smokeless powder.

Rhodes faces up to 10 years in prison at his sentencing on May 2 in U.S. District Court. He pleaded guilty Thursday.

An ATF agent has described one of the devices as a gallon glass jar with a smaller jar in the center of the target. The larger jar contained shrapnel, such as nails, glass and wire, and the smaller jar contained an accelerant.

The devices are detonated when shot by a bullet, and can cause serious injuries or death, the agent said.

Rhodes has been held with no bond since his arrest.

Federal law prohibits certain persons from having explosive materials, such as an unlawful drug user or addict. Rhodes has a history of alcohol or substance abuse, his detention order said.

Robin Fitzgerald: 228-896-2307, @robincrimenews

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