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Tilton man charged in Molotov Cocktail-throwing incident

Union Leader Correspondent

February 23. 2016 6:23PM
Shawn R. McKenney (COURTESY)

BELMONT – Police arrested a man and charged him with arson after he threw a flaming bottle of fluid – described as a Molotov Cocktail – at his ex-girlfriend's car, setting the car on fire in what authorities are calling a “domestic situation.”

Shawn R. McKenney, 26, of West Main Street, Tilton, was arraigned Tuesday on the arson charge for an incident that took place at 38 Concord St. Monday morning at 9:34 a.m., said Lt. Richard Mann.

McKenney admitted to making and throwing the weapon, which is defined as a Molotov Cocktail by state statute, Mann said.

“Unfortunately, the Internet shows how to make these explosives,” Mann said.

As firefighters quickly responded to the scene and put out the fire in the unidentified woman's 2000 Toyota
Corolla, police investigators gathered information and radioed a countywide alert with McKenney's vehicle information. A few minutes after the alert, a Tilton police officer located his vehicle at a home in Tilton.

Belmont officers met with McKenney in Tilton and were able to connect him to the crime, Mann said, adding that McKenney's “clothing showed signs of recently having been exposed to fire.”

“Based on the interview” with McKenney, Mann said, “Belmont officers visited a local gas station where they gathered surveillance video showing him filling up a container with gasoline.”

McKenney later admitted that he had “made the Molotov cocktail, lit it, then tossed it at his ex-girlfiend's vehicle that he found parked in Belmont,” Mann said.

“The car was saved from destruction due to a quick response by firefighters,” Mann said. “Thankfully no one was hurt.”

Under a state law that defines explosives and explosive substances, he said, a person who makes, sells, uses or has in his or her possession or under his or her control a bottle or other breakable container containing a flammable liquid into which has been fixed or placed a wick or similar device, “and which bottle or container when ignited and thrown will cause a fire or explosion” is required to be charged with “use of a Molotov cocktail.”

The crime is a Class B felony, Mann said.

Crime Belmont Tilton

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