OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — A woman killed in an Omaha, Nebraska, house explosion had filed a protection order against her 28-year-old grandson a day before the explosion, saying she feared the man would harm her and “start my house on fire,” court records show.
Omaha fire officials on Wednesday identified two people killed in the Tuesday morning blast as Theresa Toledo, 73, and Angela Miller, 45. Two others, Larry Rodriguez, 72, and Alexander Toledo, 28, were critically injured in the blast, officials said. Officials have not said what caused the blast, which was heard and felt miles away and was powerful enough to severely damage the homes on either side of the destroyed house.
The Omaha World-Herald reported that family members of the victims identified Miller as Theresa Toledo’s daughter and said Rodriguez was the older woman's partner.
Documents filed by Theresa Toledo on Monday in Douglas County Court identified Alexander Toledo as her grandson. In the filing, she asked a judge to order her grandson out of the house and to stay away from her and her home.
“I need Alex out of my house now before he destroys my house or harms me,” she said in the written request, adding that she believed her grandson was using methamphetamines and psychedelic mushrooms.
“He has put holes in the basement walls where he stays, and you can't even walk in the basement,” she wrote. “He has electronics in the walls and ceiling. I'm afraid he will start my house on fire.”
A judge granted the domestic abuse protection order that same day.
Witnesses to the blast in the neighborhood said they found one of the victims, a younger man presumed to be Alex Toledo, sitting outside the destroyed home with severe burns. One neighbor, Melanie Grabowski, said his clothes had been “burned off him.”
Fire officials said the blast and resulting fire also killed a family dog. Another dog found at the scene was given oxygen by firefighters and is expected to survive.