Man gets 10 years in prison for driving van with pipe bomb into church

Mar 5, 2011 – NEWARK — A man who drove a van with a pipe bomb into a Licking Township church was sentenced Friday to 10 years in prison.

Dax W. Cantrell, 36 drove a 1988 Ford Econoline van into Vineyard Grace Fellowship Church, 4905 Jacksontown Road SE, with a functional pipe bomb inside the vehicle.

Cantrell was driving away from a Licking County Sheriff’s Office deputy who attempted to serve him with child support papers at Budget Inn, 176 W. Church St., Newark. He drove into her vehicle before fleeing the scene and crashing into the church, causing $5,670 in damage.

Cantrell told deputies a bomb was in the van. Deputies found a 12-inch PVC pipe filled with black powder and other items, and they called the Columbus Bomb Squad.

Dax W. Cantrell

The squad detonated the device in the van after discovering they could not remove it safely, according to court records.

Church evacuated after bomb threat

Sept 26, 2010:  Emergency personnel evacuated approximately 30 staff members for a half hour at the First United Methodist Church on Webb Ave. and Braun St. Wednesday morning after a bomb threat was phoned into the church.

Dianne Speicher, a staff member of the church, said she answered the phone and a voice said, “There’s a bomb in the building. You have 30 minutes.”

“I called 911 and then pulled the fire alarm to evacuate,” Speicher said.

Crossville Assistant Fire Chief Chris South and Crossville Police Patrolman Chad Withrow, along with Cumberland County EMS, responded to the scene.

After investigating the church grounds, South said there was no evidence of anything suspicious and no deliveries had been made to the church.  Question:  Is your church prepared for a bomb threat?  Do you have Emergency Action Plans in place and has your staff and volunteers been trained on how to properly handle these types of emergencies?  What training has your staff and volunteers received and do you conduct quarterly drills to reinforce your training and policy & procedures.   If the answer to any of these questions are no, call WSSC Ministries today and we will get started on designing site specific emergency actions plans and training in dealing with all types of disasters and emergencies.  It just might mean the difference between life and death!

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