Joshua Prater, 18, was arrested after a housekeeper found an active improvised explosive device (IED) in his Arizona bedroom. The housekeeper brought the device to a nearby firehouse, which then called in the bomb squad and arrested Prater.
"It was something that wasn't big, but could cause serious injuries and the death of someone," Tempe Police Sgt. Mike Pooley told MyFoxPhoenix. "They had it X-rayed and saw it was a valid IED."
The cleaning woman told officials that she saw suspicious materials in the home, which led the bomb squad to do a sweep of the entire building. Police located bomb-making materials in the home and took Prater into custody. He is charged with misconduct involving weapons and possessing a prohibited weapon.
Prater admitted to building the IED but said he made it eight years ago and wasn't aware that it contained explosive powder. His parents reportedly told police that he learned to build bombs from his friends, but police have not said whether there was an intended target.
Prater was deemed a "low risk" to society by a judge but set his bond at $10,000, given "recent events," including school shootings and the Boston bombings. Prater could face a felony charge of possessing a prohibited weapon, which would land him behind bars for several years.
"She did the right thing," Pooley said of the housekeeper. "This is a very dangerous device that could have killed somebody."
Yet many don't agree with the housekeeper's actions and instead blame her for bringing the device to the authorities' attention.
"This story is ridiculous! It was a kid with a cartridge sized 'device' that he probably used out in the desert with his friends. The cleaning lady should be fired and arrested for stealing and the media should be shamed for blasting J's photo all over the internet that will follow him FOREVER," Phoenix News Times reader kate3 posted.