A chain of events that started with a man swearing at children from his upstairs apartment window has led to the man being arrested on charges of possessing a bomb and having an unregistered handgun.
On Saturday afternoon, September 23, the movie was over at the Kent Theatre and children were playing outside of the theatre at Main and Cherry Street, when a man in the apartment across the street began swearing at the kids and telling them to be quiet. The children’s grandfather, who was working at the Theatre, was acquainted with the man, Robert Allen Andrews, 19, and went across the street and upstairs to his apartment to talk to him about what he had said.
According to the grandfather, Andrews reportedly told him he worked third shift and was trying to sleep. Police said that during the conversation, the man showed the grandfather he had a handgun, and charged the weapon to rack a round into the chamber. The grandfather then left and told other Kent Theatre volunteers, and one of them called police. Cedar Springs Police, Kent County Sheriff Department, and the Rockford Police all arrived on scene.
According to Cedar Springs Police Chief Roger Parent, Officer Marckini responded and spoke to the Andrews. He asked to see the firearm displayed but did not want him to bring it out to him. The officer was allowed inside and was shown where the firearm was in a bedroom. The officer saw additional handguns and checked them through LEIN to prove ownership. One handgun was found to be an unregistered firearm.
While in the bedroom, Officer Marckini saw what appeared to be a small pipe bomb or other type IED (improvised explosive device.) He said Andrews told him it was like a novelty, something he made a year ago. Markings on the device were showing a danger zone and Officer Marckini confiscated the item.
Back at City Hall, they put the device into the bucket of the DPW front-end loader and called the Michigan State Police Bomb Squad. The bomb squad used robotics to cut open the device and rendered it safe.
Parent said the device consisted of three main parts: the body or container with a fuse attached, smokeless powder from fireworks, and hundreds of birdshot and BB pellets.
“In their official opinion, this device had the characteristics of an improvised explosive device–designed to explode and produce damage to life, limb, or property and falls into the appropriate criminal felony charge of possession of a bomb, a 5 year felony,” said Parent.
The case was forwarded to the Prosecutor’s Office for review and a two-count warrant was issued for the arrest of Robert Allen Andrews. He was arrested on Sunday evening, September 30, 2012. He was arraigned in 63rd District Court on Monday, October 1, on a dangerous weapons charge and purchasing a pistol without a license. Bond was set at $7,500 cash/surety.