CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- A search for a domestic-violence suspect led Fayette County authorities to find illegal guns and explosives on Friday.
Fayette County Sheriff Steve Kessler said deputies went to the home of Willam Sorrells Jr., 45, of Danese, at about 1 a.m. Friday to look for Sorrells' son following a complaint about a domestic-violence incident. The son, Earnest Sorrells, 22, wasn't there, but Kessler said William Sorrells became combative with deputies and was arrested for obstructing a police officer.
When they checked Sorrells' criminal history, deputies discovered he had been convicted of two felonies in 1994. Deputies had allegedly noticed a semiautomatic rifle in the house, and Sorrells is prohibited from keeping weapons because he is a felon.
Kessler said deputies went back to the house with a search warrant about 9 a.m. While searching, they allegedly found 20 canisters of explosives hidden in the basement, Kessler said.
Ernest Sorrells, William Sorrells' son, was at the house when deputies returned and allegedly told deputies he had found the explosives at a mine site and stored them at his father's house. Bomb disposal experts were called in to get rid of the explosives because they were old and unstable, Kessler said.
Kessler said further charges are expected to be filed against both men.
"The possession of any type of explosive material or explosive device without a permit is a very serious crime," Kessler said. "A residential basement is certainly not a proper place to store explosives of any kind. If this explosive had detonated it would have posed a substantial danger not only to the occupants of this residence but to close neighbors as well."
Reach Rusty Marks at rustyma...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-1215.