Metro East man charged with bomb threats, making threat against the president
Roman Conaway By Lakisha Jackson
By Lakisha Jackson
(KMOV) -- A 7-hour standoff in Fairview Heights, Illinois ended peacefully.
Roman Conaway was charged with one count of making false threats to detonate an explosive device and one count of making a threat against the president of the United States
Police say this started when federal investigators arrived at a home in the 9000 block of Summit Drive.
FBI agents were there to question, 50-year-old Roman Conaway, for threats he made to Muslims and the president.
Investigators said that Conaway had two 55-gallon barrel jugs filled with liquid. He also had what he called a suicide belt made out of play-dough.
Authorities say they moved with caution because they received a tip that Conaway had been trained in making bombs.
Around 2:00 a.m. on Wednesday, Conaway allowed two hostages to leave his home. Conaway then walked out and surrendered.
During the standoff residents near the scene were evacuated.
It took six hours of negotiating for Conaway to release his wife and son.
Mary Conaway is the wife of Roman Conaway, and the victim as well. She tells News 4 her husband is a good man, who was pushed over the edge by a custody dispute involving his 3 grandchildren. Mary Conaway says she and her husband had raised their grandchildren, ages 7, 2 and 8 months, for the past several years.
She says the children's father regained custody of the children two months ago, then Tuesday morning her daughter was granted a 2-year order of protection against Roman Conaway. She said the thought of not seeing his grandchildren for that long is what caused him to threaten to kill her, their son and himself late last night.
In addition to the suspect's wife, News 4 talked to his daughter, Amanda Townsend. She's the one who got the order of protection against Roman Conaway tuesday, after she claims he made verbal threats to kill her and her husband.
She says he just needs mental help, and that he's been like this for years. She does not believe, as the mother claims, that the protection order is what put him over the edge.
His wife said the threat was never against President Obama. She claims he called the Imam at a St. Louis Mosque Tuesday, and said that Presidents George H. W. Bush and George W. Bush should be charged with genocide for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. She says Roman Conaway is now undergoing a mental evaluation.
Conaway is in custody and is scheduled to make his first appearance in United States District Court in East St. Louis, on Thursday, September 23.