Illegal fireworks suspect appears in New Haven court - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Illegal fireworks suspect appears in New Haven court

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Illegal fireworks suspect appeared in New Haven court on Friday. (WFSB) Illegal fireworks suspect appeared in New Haven court on Friday. (WFSB)
NEW HAVEN, CT (WFSB) -

Court documents reveal what led police to find a New Haven home full of fireworks and black powder on Thursday morning.

According to the court paperwork, 49-year-old Pasquale Criscio's ex-wife was removing belongings from the house, when there was an argument and she took a picture of the fireworks.

Police said the two got into an argument and when officers showed up, that's when they discovered the explosives and a whole lot of black powder.

The discovery brought out the Connecticut State Police Bomb Squad and the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection to the small house on Westminster Street.

Inside the home, police said there was evidence throughout the home to charge Criscio with making and selling fireworks.

According to court documents, when police asked Criscio is there were any fireworks in the house, he first said no.

But, police said that's when a child in the house, handed them a tube used to light off fireworks. Police pressed some more and officers said he opened the basement door.  Police said they were mortars, tubes, fuses, and black powder everywhere.

"Officer Salgado saw black powder on the floor and could smell a strong odor of black powder in the air...Black powder on the floor of the kitchen and on the carpet in the living room...inside the house, he observed several containers which contained black powder,” according to court documents.

The police report said they also found evidence in the garage and a shed in the yard. While waiting in a police cruiser, Criscio allegedly said, he was embarrassed about what his neighbors would think seeing the bomb squad.

According to court documents, he added “made the fireworks and is not a terrorist"

The warrant goes on to read: "Pasquale Criscio stated he 'makes fireworks every year to do a show for the neighborhood'. The warrant also stated he “made fireworks as a hobbyist” and it was legal to do “because he wasn't selling them.”

Criscio allegedly told police he didn't have a license to make the explosives but was trying to get one.

In addition to several boxes and plastic containers of black powder, police told Eyewitness News the search of the house also turned up the following items:

  • Consumer grade fireworks and mortar shells ranging in sizes from 3, 5, and 7 inches in length
  • Improvised mortar shells ranging in sizes of 3, 4, and 5 inches in diameter
  • Consumer grade Roman Candles 
  • Consumer grade bottle rockets and mortars

Criscio is due back in court next week.

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