Skip to main content

2 men charged with driving around St. Paul with a pipe bomb

The bomb was found in a rented car Saturday.

A bomb scare that led police to evacuate homes in a St. Paul neighborhood Saturday has led to federal charges against two men. 

Frederic Pittman III of Roseville, 37, and 40-year-old Monttraill Claiborne of St. Louis will appear in court on Friday. Both are charged with felony possession of a pipe bomb. Claiborne also faces felony charges of illegally having two guns. 

The federal charges filed against them this week (read them here) are based on an ATF agent's investigation.

Cops were called about a gas station argument

It was an incident at a Super America on St. Paul's east side that led to the initial police call on Saturday morning.

The caller said they were awakened by people yelling. Looking out the window, the person saw two men confronting some women. One of the men got a gun out of a silver car and pointed it at a woman before the men drove off, the caller said.

Officers who arrived at the Super America looked at surveillance footage to see the men and the car. They caught up with them at Maryland Avenue and Lake Place. 

Searching the rented Ford Fusion, police found two pistols inside, one of which had been reported stolen in St. Louis four years ago. When they got to the trunk, they found a duffel bag, and inside it was an explosive device made from PVC pipe.

After nearby homes were evacuated, a bomb squad defused the pipe and confirmed that the powder in it was explosive, the ATF agent writes. 

St. Louis suspect has a criminal record

Both suspects told police they didn't know about the guns or pipe bomb in the rented car. Claiborne, the suspect from St. Louis, said he'd only been in Minnesota less than a day and was a passenger in the car. 

Pittman said he'd borrowed the car from a friend, but the rental agency's records showed both Pittman and another person signed the month-long rental agreement, investigators said. 

Authorities say Claiborne's criminal record in Missouri includes drug convictions for both possession and trafficking that date back to 1995. His felony record prevents him from legally owning a gun. 

Both men are due to appear at a hearing in U.S. District Court in St. Paul at noon on Friday.

Next Up

Eric Kendricks

Vikings downgrade Eric Kendricks to out against Lions

The Vikings have also activated Michael Pierce from injured reserve.

u.s. attorney

Minnesotan sentenced after assaulting man with baseball bat

Marshall Wayne Boshey was sentenced to 30 months in prison followed by two years of supervised release.

Target store

Target's gift card discount is back, but for this weekend only

The fine print: for Target Circle members only (but membership is free).

Screen Shot 2020-06-15 at 7.11.05 AM

Minneapolis teen arrested in St. Cloud after fleeing police in stolen vehicle

The vehicle was stolen in a car-jacking in Minneapolis Thursday.

snow, blowing snow

Winter storm warnings issued with heavy snow set to slam MN

Parts of northern Minnesota could see more than a foot of snow, but there won't be much in the Twin Cities.

D'Angelo Russell

With KAT out, Timberwolves can't upset Nets

D'Angelo Russell stepped up but couldn't overcome Brooklyn's firepower.

Everson Griffen Vikings dot com

Everson Griffen confirms he has bipolar disorder

"I’ve been running from it a long time. I’m not ashamed of it anymore.”

Angela Renee Jones, St. Cloud murder suspect

St. Cloud suspect now charged in two local murder cases

Both murders happened within a day of each other in June.

st anthony 3 crop

Twin Cities police ask for help finding missing 16-year-old

Police say all her family and friends have been contacted, and none of them know where she is.

mpd suspect 12.3.21 - 1 - CROP

MPD releases photos of shooting suspect, asks for public's help

The man is wanted in connection with a fatal shooting that happened Wednesday evening.


St. Paul teen charged with murdering friend following argument

The victim's body was found outside a dog park last weekend.

2 shootings in St. Paul leave 1 dead; trains idled during rush hour

6 people have been shot to death in St. Paul so far this month.

Jewish center in St. Paul evacuated after bomb threat

It is the latest in a series of bomb threats targeting Jewish centers in Minnesota and across the country.

Here's the guy charged with torching a St. Paul cop car

Brian Lee Liston is facing two felony charges.

Charges detail shotgun shootout that injured 2 officers

Both injured officers are expected to be ok.