Karnak liquor store manager says bomb was set by frequent custom - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Karnak liquor store manager says bomb was set by frequent customer

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KARNAK, Ill. -- An employee from Wilson's Liquor Store told News 3 a suspect involved in a bomb explosion outside the business was taken into custody Friday evening. 

Wilson's manager says the man walked into the store just before 7:30 p.m. Thursday and showed an employee what she thought was a bomb. 

He then ran outside and set the explosive off. By this time the manager had already called the Pulaski County Sheriff's Department. 

Aimee Xelhua is the owner of the restaurant Las Maria's that shares the parking lot with Wilson's. She was in her office when the bomb went off. 

"My first thought was a sonic bomb," Xelhua said. "It as so loud that I actually ducked down at my desk and I came out to the restaurant and everyone jumped up from their tables and was running outside."

Managers of Wilson's Liquor Store did not want to be interviewed but said the man who set off the explosive is inside the business daily and tips well. 

"I was looking for smoke or anything, but I didn't see anything," Xelhua said. "I just saw some vehicles leaving the parking lot."

Store managers of Wilson's say the customer was in one of those vehicles leaving the parking lot. 

He left before the Pulaski County Sheriff's Department arrived on the scene. 

While deputies investigated Thursday night, people were left wondering what caused that loud boom. 

"I heard it and I thought that it was too loud for a tire explosion," Xelhua said. "I ducked because I face a window in my office."

We do know the name of the customer, but we are not releasing it at this time because he hasn't been charged. We did run his background and only found minor traffic violations. 

"It's kind of an uneasy feeling because he could have came in here," Xelhua said. "What was his motive?"

Owners of the liquor store and restaurant says they are just glad no one was hurt. 

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