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St. Mary’s County, August 14, 2020, Deputy State Fire Marshals from the Southern Region served a criminal summons for an incident involving an explosion and subsequent fire on June 4, 2020, in St. Mary’s County. On June 4, 2020 firefighters from the Hollywood Volunteer Fire Department along with surrounding St. Mary’s County companies responded to 44918 Smith’s Nursery Road in Hollywood for a reported fire in a detached garage. When firefighters arrived, they found a small fire burning inside a 2-car detached garage and quickly extinguished it.
Firefighters also located two adults with burn injuries. An adult female was transported by Maryland State Police Aviation Division to the burn unit at Washington Hospital Center. The owner of the property, Theodore Alan Gilliland, was injured as well and transported to MedStar St. Mary’s Hospital. It took 36 firefighters to bring the incident under control in approximately 30 minutes. The damage was estimated at $25,000.00.
While firefighters were operating on the incident scene, witnesses reported that they heard several loud explosions prior to the fire. Firefighters also found what they believed were explosive device components and requested a response from the Maryland State Fire Marshal’s Office. Due to the nature of the incident, Bomb Technicians from the Maryland State Fire Marshal’s Bomb Squad also responded.
During the course of the investigation, several explosive devices were located as well as explosive device components. The devices and components were removed from the garage to be rendered safe.
The owner of the property, Gilliland, was charged with several crimes including Possession of a Destructive Device, Possession of Explosive Material with the Intent to Create a Destructive Device and 2 counts of Reckless Endangerment. The maximum penalties if convicted of all charges are 60 years in jail and $510,000.00 in fines.