Cops: Woman Was Building a Bomb in Walmart

Police arrest Emily Stallard in Florida
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 15, 2020 1:58 PM CST

(Newser) – A Florida woman is facing charges of attempted arson and firebombing after police say she tried to build a bomb inside a Walmart. Emily Stallard, 37, "had all the supplies she needed to cause mass destruction" when she was arrested at the Tampa store around 6pm Saturday, Hillsborough Sheriff Chad Chronister said in a statement, per the Tampa Bay Times. "Had it not been for an alert off-duty law enforcement officer and a watchful security staff at Walmart, she may have followed through with her plans to cause an explosion inside the store." A security guard first noticed Stallard—accompanied by a child—opening items on shelves, including what the sheriff's office said were "flammable materials, projectiles and matches."

She got her hands on a Mason jar, nails, and denatured alcohol, to which she added a shoelace as a wick, according to an arrest report viewed by WTVT. Police say Stallard "encouraged the child" to take part in the act. Stallard was detained by the guard and an off-duty Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission officer before police arrived. Stallard allegedly spit on deputies as she was taken into a patrol car, per CNN. Additionally charged with contributing to the delinquency of a minor, child abuse, and battery on a law enforcement officer, she's held in Hillsborough County jail with bail at $8,500. (Read more Florida stories.)

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