Local News

Raleigh Man Faces Federal Charges Of Possessing Explosive Device

Posted June 28, 2005

— A Raleigh man who has been sitting in a jail for nearly six weeks now faces federal charges of possessing an explosive device. His attorney, however, says the device was nothing more than a cherry bomb.

Authorities arrested Christopher Kent when he was found stopped on a Virginia highway in May.

Because Kent said he had a pistol in his glove box, officers searched Kent's car and found an assault rife, a plastic spice container with black powder and fuse, plus a Jumbo Bomb Kit used for making M-80s.

Officers also found an e-mail that described a meeting with a person who wanted to make sure Kent was not with law enforcement.

A week earlier, Raleigh law enforcement and the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms searched Kent's storage unit at Public Storage on Glenwood Avenue, but did not find anything illegal.

After his arrest, authorities searched a storage unit in Virginia and found books on explosives and grenade components.

Investigators also seized information from Kent's computer, but court papers do not indicate if anything related to this case was found.

Kent, a former Fort Bragg soldier, told investigators he was a gun collector and that he had no intention of harming anyone.

The pistol and the rifle that were found in Kent's car were both legal. A state charge for carrying a concealed weapon will not be prosecuted.

Kent's only local address was a post office box at a UPS store in Raleigh because he said he had recently broken up with his girlfriend and was moving back to his hometown in Oregon. Therefore, he said, his belongings were in storage.

If convicted, Kent could spend up to 10 years in federal prison.

A detention hearing is scheduled next week to determine if Kent will receive bond.

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