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Man Arrested for Allegedly Threatening Movie Theaters With Bombs Made From...Tennis Balls

"I never really thought anything of it until they were telling me that it was a bomb."

An Indianapolis man was arrested Tuesday after authorities searched his room and found an explosive tennis ball, which he had allegedly been threatening to use at area movie theaters.

But 20-year-old Neal Grubbs' mother believes her son is being set up.

“I believe Neal was set up and framed,” Grubbs' mother, who was not identified by name, told WXIN-TV. “They were plastic pellets. I never really thought anything of it until they were telling me that it was a bomb."

neal grubbs_WTHR Police responded to an anonymous tip that Neal Grubbs was threatening to use tennis ball bombs at local movie theaters. (Image source: WTHR-TV)

The local news station reported that Grubbs told police that the tennis ball, outfitted with a fuse with explosive, multicolored pellets inside, was given to him by someone else. It's the "someone else" who Grubbs' mother thinks is framing her son.

Watch WXIN-TV's report:

Grubbs' mother was informed by the FBI that they would be coming to search her home, believing a bomb was inside, WTHR-TV reported. Police began investigating the case when they received an anonymous tip a few weeks ago, associating Grubbs with the tennis ball bombs and claiming he threatened to use them at two movie theaters in Hendricks County.

Neighbor Suzanne Sokol watched as a bomb squad descended on the house Tuesday.

"That is just plain scary," Sokol told WTHR. "What if it would have gone off? What if something would've happened? ... His window is right next to my house."

She described watching the authorities test the tennis ball outside.

"They put some type of substance in the bag, held the bag up and then the bag turned purple," Sokol said.

Grubbs' mother maintains that her son did not create or knowingly bring a bomb into her home.

"We know that Neal didn't do this and he would never ever even dream about bombing cinemas," she told WTHR. "He is not a violent person. If I'd known or Neal would have known that this ball was dangerous, he would not let it be in my home."

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Featured image via Shutterstock

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