SHALLOTTE, N.C. — Authorities said a hand grenade that killed a Virginia teenager may be one of the many explosives that were unknowingly sold at a North Carolina antique mall.
The deadly explosion happened in Abingdon, Virginia two days before Christmas, news outlets reported.
The federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives did not release the identity of the teen, but they said in a statement Thursday the grenade that killed the victim may have been purchased at Fancy Flea Antique Mall in Shallotte.
“At the time of sale, neither the vendor nor buyer(s) believed the grenades to be functioning or hazardous,” the agency said. They described the explosives as “‘inert’ MK2 grenades” that have “a style used during World War II.”
The agency had said in December they were looking for a grenade that was sold from that vendor in June and may be ready to explode. Authorities do not know how many grenades were sold or who purchased them since cash transactions are common at the store.
The ATF wants the public’s help in locating the grenades and anyone who might have purchased them.