Man Accused Of Booby-Trapping Home With Explosives In Court, Search For More Bombs Continues


UPDATED: Thursday January 16, 2014 5:30 PM

A Columbus man accused of booby-trapping his home with explosives made his first court appearance Thursday morning.

Mark Kulis is behind bars after the Franklin County Sheriff's Bomb Squad discovered and detonated five explosive devices Wednesday in his home on Carolyn Drive near Maize Road in north Columbus. 

A judge set his bond at $710,000 on Thursday.

While Kulis was in court, authorities were continuing to search through his home.

During Wednesday's search, Sheriff Zach Scott says the bomb squad discovered the oven was booby trapped with a motion sensor.  

"It was a motion sensor device that if you hit the stove or opened it hard it would have went off."
 
The sheriff says the ordeal began when deputies waited for 55-year-old Kulis to leave the house before they served him with an eviction and a probate order for a mental health evaluation. 

Deputies say that's when they discovered Kulis was carrying a loaded gun.  Hundreds of signs and messages are posted on the trees and walls outside Kulis' home.  The sheriff says the suspect declares he's a sovereign citizen, meaning he believes he doesn't answer to government authority.

A dog trained to sniff explosives searched the house from top to bottom, and the sheriff says investigators were shocked when they went inside.

"He's got writings everywhere including on top of the ceilings, on appliances," said Sheriff Scott.  "He's got names we don't recognize, some we do recognize."

Neighbors say they saw the signs.

"We all knew about it. We all kept an eye on him. I would always drive by there and get a case of the willies because you just don't know, somebody in that state, what they're capable of doing," said David Moriarty.

Moriarty says he went to school with Kulis and says he's worried knowing his brother Jim, living across the street.

"Just had to wonder because of the state of mind he was in," said neighbor Jim Moriarty.

Jim Moriarty says Kulis' condition got worse over the past few years.

"He felt that people were spying on him, tapping his phones and this and that. That's why he had his phone turned off and he said he's not going to pay any of his bills because he feels that the American government was messing him over," said Jim Moriarty.

Neighbors like Grace Estepp and her son Paul are worried about what will happen to this troubled man.

"He doesn't have any family, nowhere to go. It's sad," said Estepp.

The Franklin County Sheriff says he still doesn't know Kulis' intentions.

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