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Local Mother Reacts to Bomb Found on Front Porch

A St. Joseph mother of two said she feels lucky to be alive after she found a bomb sitting outside her front door early Sunday morning.

Posted: Mar 20, 2018 10:13 AM
Updated: Mar 20, 2018 11:01 AM

(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) A St. Joseph mother of two said she feels lucky to be alive after she found a bomb sitting outside her front door early Sunday morning.

"I probably am a little paranoid at this point because that's scary," Alexis Washington, victim, said. "I mean who would want to blow up anyone, period?"

The incident happened around 2 a.m. Sunday morning when police said they responded to Washington's 9-1-1 call of hearing a loud bang outside her window followed by flashes of red light.

While it's unclear what exactly caused that initial pop and flash of light, authorities did confirm finding a homemade explosive device sitting on Washington's front porch.

"It was a device that we believe was designed to impart an explosion of some sort," Capt. Jeff Wilson, SJPD, said.

Washington said the bomb was a propane tank with ammo attached to it. She said there was a lit paper towel on top, but luckily the spark went out before the bomb could go off.

"The cop was walking up to the sidewalk and I was just pointing to the porch, like I was just frantically pointing and he flashed his light over there at the porch and then he flashed it back at me in the window and was telling me to get out," Washington said.

Police have not confirmed the device was a propane tank. However, Washington said the police had told her the tank was leaking the night they found it.

Washington said the suspect also doused the entire porch in kerosene.

"It was a very frightening thing because my son was there on the other side of that window right by it and he was asleep - he had just went to sleep. I was like 'what am I supposed to do," Washington said.

After police told Washington to get out of the home, she said she quickly grabbed her 17-month old son and newborn daughter and fled out of the back of the house.

The real nail biter is Washington had only lived in the home two days prior to the incident. She believes the bomb may have been intended for the woman who lived at the home before her.

"I found out that the previous girl who lived here, she wasn't in the best spot in life and so I think maybe that could be what it is. I mean I was only here for two days," Washington said.

Capt. Wilson said calls for explosives don't happen often in St. Joseph, he even described the incident has rare.

For now, police said authorities along with Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearm Investigators are working to find a suspect in relation to the case.

"This investigation will continue. The detectives will continue to rundown leads that they have in reference to this," Capt. Wilson said.

Authorities said no one was injured in the incident, and no suspects have been arrested.

Washington said she's just happy to have another day to share with her children.

"That was just God. He was with us, He was definitely with us," Washington said.

Washington said they will no longer be living at the residence. The investigation is still on going.

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A disturbance is pushing through southeast Nebraska this morning that could bring some isolated showers and thunderstorms to northwest Missouri & northeast Kansas. The activity should come to an end by early afternoon. We'll see skies clear and temperatures will warm up into the upper 80's by Wednesday afternoon.
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