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ATF: Man making illegal fireworks in basement of Raytown duplex kills himself in explosion

By Jackson Kurtz

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    RAYTOWN, Missouri (KMBC) — The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives said investigators have discovered a body of a man in the basement area of the home that exploded Monday night in Raytown, Missouri.

Along with the man that died, the ATF said three people, including two children, were injured in the explosion in the 7400 block of Englewood Lane.

Firefighters, police and medics responded around 7 p.m. Monday to the explosion and subsequent fire at the Raytown home.

John Ham with the ATF said the initial investigation revealed that somebody was making illegal fireworks in the basement of the duplex. Ham said medical officials will need to confirm the victim’s identity, but it is believed to be the person making the illegal fireworks.

“This has gone from a sad event to a tragic event,” Ham said. “Fireworks are unstable by nature because when you light them, you want them to go off and explode. For somebody to try and make them themselves – either mixing chemicals or buying consumer fireworks and trying to take the powder out of those – unfortunately this can be the result.”

Witnesses reported seeing two boys who were conscious and alert wheeled from the scene on gurneys. A man also was injured and taken to a hospital for treatment.

The ATF said Tuesday once the structure is secure enough to make entry, the body will be removed and turned over to the Jackson County Medical Examiner’s Office for identification.

The Missouri Fire Marshal is assisting in the investigation and it was still being treated as a crime scene.

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