A Cleveland man has been arrested for making terroristic threats and possession of an explosive device.
A Cleveland man has been arrested for making terroristic threats and possessing an explosive device.
John Mance Burchfield was arrested Sunday after turning himself over to Bradley County Sheriff’s Office authorities.
According to the BCSO report of the Nov. 28 incident, deputies responded to Burchfield’s Rose Avenue home to conduct a welfare check on Burchfield’s wife. A relative had called authorities because she had allegedly received calls from another relative that Burchfield had been sending texts about having “made a bomb and was going to blow everyone up.”
BCSO Deputy Scotty Wiggins responded to the scene, and “both parties advised that he could look around the residence to make sure there was no explosive device,” the report stated. However, Wiggins “saw what appeared to be a bucket with a funnel in the back bedroom. Mr. Burchfield told Deputy Wiggins that he used it to make a device to scare off the demons that he believed to be after him …”
Also, Burchfield gave the deputy consent to look at messages he had sent to his brother on his cellphone. According to the report, the messages “said that if they don’t leave him alone he will blow the hell out of the backyard and take out everybody.”
When Deputy David Denton arrived on the scene, he “observed a sign on the front door and in the window that said those who make entry will be covered in the blood of Jesus Christ. The same sign was above the door of the back bedroom.”
Denton also observed “what appeared to be a ring of salt around a chair with an open Bible on it, and salt lines around the windows and doors. Mr. Burchfield stated that he used the lines to keep the demons that were in pursuit of him out.”
Burchfield allegedly told deputies that the bucket was filled with fertilizer and paint “and was only used to scare and intimidate those [who] were after him,” the report stated.
At that point, the Cleveland Police Department was requested to dispatch its EOD (explosive ordnance disposal) unit to the scene to assess the device. CPD Officer Victor Cleveland said “the device had all the components of an explosive device other than a detonator, and there was a bottle of alcohol on the nightstand that could have been used as an oxidizer,” the report state. The device was then dismantled.
The BCSO’s Criminal Investigations Division photographed the scene.
“Mr. Burchfield has been taken to Tennova for a mental evaluation, and warrants for possession of an explosive device, and terroristic threats have been issued,” the report stated. In addition, Burchfield’s cellphone was seized and logged into evidence.
According to BCSO spokesman Adam Lewis, the reason for the delay between the incident in November and arrest Sunday was because time needed for mental evaluation. When Burchfield returned home, Lewis said BCO was able to work out “a peaceful resolution” in which he turned himself in. Burchfield was arraigned Monday morning.
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