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Truck bombing might have been payback for earlier incident

August 20, 2009|By ERIN JULIUS

o Four sought in connection with "bottle bombs" incident

HAGERSTOWN -- A Wednesday night bombing of a pickup truck in the 12000 block of Beck Road near Chewsville might have been payback for the detonation of soda bombs near a Leitersburg Pike home a day earlier, Deputy State Fire Marshal Joseph Zurolo said Thursday.

A 1998 Mitsubishi pickup truck belonging to Mark Anthony Peel, 29, of Hagerstown, was heavily damaged when a homemade bomb detonated at 10 p.m. Wednesday, Zurolo said Thursday in a telephone interview.

No one was injured in the explosion, Zurolo said.

Peel is one of four men who was sought in connection with the Tuesday morning explosion outside a home in the 20100 block of Leitersburg Pike.

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"That's probably a little more than just a coincidence," Zurolo said.

The men and a 17-year-old Chewsville juvenile turned themselves in to fire marshals at the Maryland State Police barracks Thursday.

Gregory Oswald, 25, of Smithsburg; Samuel Adam Myerly, 25, of Chewsville; Jeremy Wayne Peel, 27, of Hagerstown; the 17-year-old; and Mark Anthony Peel each were charged with manufacturing and possession of a destructive device, Zurolo said.

Peel's truck was parked at his mother's home on Beck Road. His mother heard the explosion, and when she went to investigate, she saw a small vehicle speed off, Zurolo said in a news release.

Investigators said the incident Tuesday at the Leitersburg Pike home occurred at about 3 a.m., while the homeowner and his 8-year-old son were asleep. The homeowner was awakened by the explosions and saw five people standing in his front yard; he chased them but lost sight of them, according to Zurolo.

The explosion was the result of "bottle bombs" being thrown at the house, Zurolo said.

The Deputy State Fire Marshals Office, the Washington County Sheriff's Department and Maryland State Police were asking for help from the community to identify whoever was involved in the Wednesday night incident.

Anyone with information may call Maryland State Police in Hagerstown at 301-739-2101 or the Maryland Arson Hotline at 1-800-492-7529.

Zurolo said Thursday that people should not worry about their safety.

"The general public themselves shouldn't be worried that all of a sudden someone is going to come by and blow their car up or do something to their house," he said.

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