Bryce Reed
Image Reuters

Bryce Reed, the Texas paramedic who helped evacuate people from the fertilizer plant in West, Texas the night of the deadly explosion, is charged with possessing bomb-making materials, including a pipe and chemicals. A criminal complaint against Reed alleges that he was in possession of a destructive device, although, as of yet, there is no evidence linking Reed to the fire or explosion at West Fertilizer Co. that killed 14 people.

"I don't know that they're making that connection," said a source familiar with the matter, who asked not to be identified because she was not authorized to speak to the news media.

A fire erupted at the plant April 17, and a massive explosion rocked the town of West about 20 minutes later. The state fire marshal's office has said that ammonium nitrate stored at the plant detonated in the explosion, but that the cause of the fire and blast were still being investigated.

"This disaster has severely impacted the community of West, and we want to ensure that no stone goes unturned and that all the facts related to this incident are uncovered," Steven McCraw, director of the Texas Department of Public Safety, said in a statement announcing that the Texas Rangers and McLennan County Sheriff's office would join in a criminal investigation.

Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives special agent Douglas Kunze says in the complaint that sheriff's deputies were called earlier this week to a home near West where they found a pipe, chemicals and fuses. The objects were identified as belonging to Reed, who did not enter into a plea when he appeared in court Friday.

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