SAN DIEGO (AP) - A man was arrested Tuesday after a homemade
cannon blasted his mobile home and killed his girlfriend in a remote mountain community east of San Diego, authorities said.
Richard Fox, 39, shot the cannon after loading it with fireworks powder, said San Diego County sheriff's Sgt. David Martinez.
His 38-year-old girlfriend was found dead from shrapnel wounds when authorities arrived at the home.
Fox was treated briefly at a hospital for shrapnel wounds to his right leg and arrested for investigation of exploding a device resulting in death, Martinez said.
Three other adults and a 4-year-old girl who were inside the home escaped injury.
Preliminary evidence suggested Fox was under the influence of alcohol, Martinez said. Investigators had not determined if the blast was accidental.
"He gave us his version of the story. We want to corroborate that based on the evidence we find at the scene," Martinez said.
Fox lived at the home with his girlfriend, whose name was not released, and the 4-year-old girl, who was to be placed with a relative. Martinez declined to identify the three surviving adults who were inside the home.
The blast occurred in Potrero, a remote community of about 700 people on the Mexican border, about 40 miles east of San Diego.