3:23:21 PMBoston police officer charged after explosives found at home -
A Boston police officer is free on bail after he pleaded not guilty this morning to charges he stole military-grade explosives and stored them in his former home in Plymouth.
Officer Kirk Merricks was freed on $1,000 bail after his arraignment in Plymouth District Court this morning.
Merricks was arrested last night and charged with 11 counts of possession of an explosive device, four counts of receiving stolen property and one count of illegal possession of ammunition,Plymouth Police Chief Michael E. Botieri said.
Boston police said Merricks was placed on administrative leave with pay following his arrest.
According to the police report, Merricks’ estranged wife called cops yesterday to report finding explosives.
She told police she and her son found the explosives Saturday while gathering Merricks’ belongings.
Police said inside a metal box she pointed out were four "explosive sticks” marked TNT wrapped in "military green” cloth. Alongside them were several rounds of small arms ammunition.She then led officers to an aluminum shed behind the home where she pointed out a black briefcase. Inside the case were four 40 mm grenades marked "high explosive” for use with an M203 grenade launcher, police said. Cops also found detonation cord and blasting caps.
Military-grade explosives and ammunition were recovered and some were "rendered safe” at a remote location while other explosives were taken into evidence, the state Fire Marshal’s office said.Merricks was on duty as Plymouth police were inside the home. He returned to Plymouth where declined to speak with detectives at the station and was then arrested.
Merricks’ estranged wife said the couple separated June 4, when she filed a restraining order that was vacated 16 days later. In the order, she alleges verbal abuse such as yelling, but no physical abuse.Merricks’ lawyer Eric Goldman said his client had not been living at the house for three months.
He said Merricks is a 14-year veteran of the Boston Police Department who served with the Marine Corps during Desert Storm and was a reservist with the Army National Guard for a tour in Afghanistan.He said the divorce proceedings between the officer and his estranged wife are "very contentious.
”Goldman questioned the ownership of the explosives and told the court that Robin Merricks’ son, who is also a military veteran, has been living at the home in Plymouth.
By: O’Ryan Johnson
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