TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Still no charges have been filed in an unusual case that started out as an accidental shooting, but has become an investigation by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms into five pipe bombs found in a home on the Northwest side.
The Pima County Sheriff’s Department has ruled the shooting death of a 17-year-old by his 19-year-old uncle was an accidental shooting with an AK-47.
While investigating the shooting, deputies discovered the bombs, several shotguns, handguns, an AR-15 and a grenade launcher.
For Lauralee Flores, the find was especially concerning because her backyard adjoins with the house where the bombs were found.
“We can see into their room, their house,” she said standing in their backyard, a wall separating their property.
She has lived there for the past eight years with her husband and two children who play outside because there’s no through traffic and most neighbors know each other.
“A little neighborhood, it was safe,” she said. “We didn’t expect anything like that to happen here.”
As is often the case, there was no suspicion, although there were clues that things may not have been exactly right, especially the parties which went late into the night.
“Sometimes we did hear explosions, we didn’t know how big they were,” she said. “It wasn’t enough to wake up the kids, it was usually late at night and never caused us concern that we would call police.”
But for the neighbors, the illusion of a quiet, idyllic neighborhood has been shattered.
“Unsure, are we safe? Should be go somewhere else? Should we get to a hotel for the night?” she said. “We haven’t heard anything so we assume they’ve got everything under control, that’s our hope.”
They’ve heard nothing from the sheriff’s department or the federal investigators, and even she and her family moving out in a couple of weeks, it’s still unnerving.
“I would be nice to hear from them,” she said. “I think that would have calmed us, helped me feel better, helped the kids too.”
The sheriff’s department said weapons and explosives charges may be filed but it would wait until the ATF finishes its investigation.
Calls to the ATF were not returned.