Suspect in Woonsocket bomb scare to appear in court next week

Blackstone Valley

WOONSOCKET, R.I. (WPRI) — A Woonsocket man is scheduled to appear in court next week after a pipe bomb was found in his former apartment.

About 50 residents of the Morin Heights housing complex in Woonsocket were evacuated Thursday morning after employees discovered the device. The bomb squad was called in to remove it from the apartment.

Jan Carlos Martinez-Lopez, 22, turned himself later that afternoon and was charged with one count of placing explosives, according to police.

He appeared before a bail commissioner and was released on $10,000 personal recognizance. Martinez-Lopez is scheduled to be arraigned on January 21.

The motive behind the device is unclear at this time and the incident remains under investigation.

Martinez-Lopez was scheduled to be evicted on Friday, according to police, but he had already moved out by Thursday morning.

“It wasn’t a booby trap,” Deputy Police Chief Michael Lemoine said.

The state fire marshal initially called the device a hoax but further examination revealed that it contained explosive material such as gun powder, police said.

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