Germantown suspect’s mother says he has a history of mental illness

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GERMANTOWN (WITI) — Crews from the ATF and bomb disposal units on Wednesday, May 1st removed large amounts of explosives from a Germantown home. Officials say the material will be taken to a quarry to be blown up.

Meanwhile, FOX6 News spoke with the suspect's mother, who says her son wanted to start a fireworks company, and has a history of mental illness.

According to authorities, there was enough explosive material found inside the home to "blow up an entire house, and damage surrounding buildings."

"I can tell you it's a very large amount of explosive material of individual items.  Something that is unprecedented for us here in Germantown," Germantown Police Chief Peter Hoell said.

The removal began at 8:30 a.m. and was expected to take about four or five hours. During the removal process part of Highway Q was closed. However, no residential evacuations were made.

Authorities then investigated a car and an outbuilding for explosive materials.

A 33-year-old man was taken into custody Tuesday night, April 30th after officials received a tip regarding potential explosives inside the home in the Autumn Ridge Subdivision near County Road Q and Amber Drive.

The suspect was arrested at a home he shares with his grandmother. Court records indicate he has been in trouble with the law since 1999.

Chief Hoell says the suspect is talking with police and it does not appear he was planning any kind of attack.

"We don't know what his motives are. We don't think there were any targets or they weren't used or intended to be used to cause someone harm. At this point, we don't believe that's the case," Chief Hoell said.

Some homes in the area were evacuated Tuesday night as officials investigated the home.

Bill Brehem's neighbors were among those evacuated, and he said he was relieved police found the explosives and took a man into custody.

"I don't understand what it's all about.  They said they knew of him before so I don't know what they had on him before that. Basically speaking, it's hard for me to comprehend what's going on down there," Brehem said.

Police will not say what type of explosive devices are in the home, or how they were tipped off to them.