Oxford police arrest burglar in the act, find homemade pipe bomb in suspect's truck


Johnny Wade Stevens, 34, of Anniston, was arrested late Friday morning for burglary and possession of a controlled substance, Oxford police said.

Wade was seen burglarizing a home in the 60 block of Burtram Drive around 10:25 a.m. and was apprehended less than 30 minutes later in the 1400 block of Beck Road.

Johnny Wade Stevens

Following his arrest, officers found a homemade pipe bomb in Wade's truck, prompting police to request assistance from the ATF in Birmingham and the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office Bomb Squad, who safely detonated the device around 1:15 p.m. No one was injured.

Police say an investigation remains ongoing and additional charges are pending.


Oxford police caught a burglar in the act Friday morning and in possession of a pipe bomb, ABC 33/40 reporter Robert Richardson has learned.

Officers spotted the suspect committing a burglary around 10:30 a.m. and later arrested him in the 1400 block of Beck Road. According to Oxford Police Chief Bill Partridge, during a search of the suspect's truck, police discovered a homemade pipe bomb, prompting authorities to request assistance from the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office Bomb Squad.

"Our first concern is the safety of our citizens here and around the area, to make sure that they were safe ultimately," Partridge said. "Of course, we were fortunate enough that Sheriff [Mike] Hale allowed his bomb squad to come over and take care of the device over here this afternoon."The pipe bomb was safely detonated around 1:15 p.m. a short distance away from the suspect's truck. Partridge said investigators have yet to determine why he had the bomb."No idea at this time [why he had the bomb], he has not been interviewed," Partridge said. "He is in custody and he is waiting on them being interviewed now."The suspect is facing state burglary charges, as well as federal charges, according to police.No one was injured in the incident.

Click image to enlarge. Images from ABC 33/40 video show a burglary suspect's homemade pipe bomb being detonated in Oxford, Friday, January 17, 2014. (

ABC 33/40 will continue to follow this story and provide updates as more information is made available. Watch the news at 5 and 6 p.m. for more the latest information. To watch live online, click here.


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