Man Arrested After Authorities Find 6 Homemade Bombs

Man Arrested After Authorities Find 6 Homemade Bombs

( – An Arkansas man is finally in custody awaiting trial for a case that started with a harassment call placed by a Bella Vista woman in early December. Here’s what’s known about the man’s alleged criminal conduct.

On December 9, Laurel Wooten called officials with the Bella Vista Police Department (BVPD) to report that her roommate, Lawrence Hickman, had been harassing her. She related that he had bragged about raping several unnamed women in the past. She advised responding officers that she found a chloroform bottle in a drawer in their shared house.

A police report reviewed by local media outlets also showed that a friend of Wooten’s told BVPD officers that he had found several pipe bombs stored in a toolbox located in a shed on the property. The officers contacted the Bentonville Bomb Squad, one of only six explosives units in the state, for assistance. After evacuating the neighborhood, they confirmed the devices were live and removed them from the premises.

On December 12, members of the US Marshals Service, FBI, ATF, and BVPD returned to the neighborhood to interview residents about the incident. An individual named Steven Pyle told officials that Hickman planned to travel through Vancouver, Canada, to Alaska in a kayak. Eventually, he wanted to work his way to the Philippines, where his wife lived, by traveling through the Bearing Sea — the stretch of water separating Alaska and the eastern edge of Russia.

The following day, law enforcement officials from Pacific County, Washington, contacted the BVPD to advise that they had arrested Hickman. They said phone calls they overheard from the arrestee indicated he planned to flee the country.

News reports indicated that Pacific County police officers found several suspicious items during Hickman’s arrest. They included several bags of black powder, a laptop, ammunition, a compound bow, a bolt action rifle, and an AR-15-style weapon.

Witness statements collected at the time of Hickman’s arrest revealed that he planned to flee the country to avoid an upcoming criminal trial in Texas. BVPD officials confirmed the outstanding charges but didn’t elaborate on the crimes alleged.

Arkansas officials successfully extradited Hickman and booked him into the Benton County jail on December 21. He faces six felony counts of six counts of criminal possession of explosive material/destructive device. Jailers are currently holding him on a cash-only bond of one million dollars.

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