Neighbors react to North Fargo fireworks accidentFargo, ND (WDAY TV) - A tragic story out of North Fargo. A fourth of July celebration turned deadly for this man, 41 year-old Jesse Burley, who police say lit a commercial firework illegally within the city limits. It killed him.
A tragic story out of North Fargo. A fourth of July celebration turned deadly for this man, 41 year-old Jesse Burley, who police say lit a commercial firework illegally within the city limits. It killed him.
Police say they're confident the firework that killed Jesse Burley was not supposed to be in his possession.
Chris Hanson - North Fargo: "It happened so quick..."
Neighbors say they told Burley that lighting those fireworks were a bad idea.
Hanson - "That doesn't look like a good idea to do, that is something you shouldn't be doing in a trailer court. "
Chris Hanson, who lives down the street in the Riviera Heights mobile home park, watched Burley bend down to light his second round of commercial-grade fireworks.
Hanson - "I was probably thirty yards tops away from him"
What happened next is a nightmare that Hanson says he has to relive for the rest of his life.
Hanson - "It was the most... Ugh, I can't even explain to you guys. The things that were going through my mind when it happened..."
The explosion so strong, so powerful, it shook to the core of neighbor's mobile homes.
Joyce Skinner – Heard the Explosion: "Some of my whatnots that were hanging on my wall, and some of my pictures over the window there, the double window on the end, they fell off the wall."
Hanson can't believe that just hours earlier, Burley was telling him how great the fireworks were.
Hanson - "I actually found the package, it said ' if found return to the US government.'"
Hanson says he has no idea how Burley got the fireworks, but wishes he would have used caution.
Hanson - "As you can see, fireworks, don't mess around."
Hanson says Burley told him he wanted to show the community a firework display they would never forget.
Hanson - "You know, everyone was lighting off their fireworks, and he was like I'm gonna beat that, I'm gonna beat that, I'm gonna beat that bang.”
Police say instead of using a commercial cardboard pipe, Burley used a man-made, metal device to launch the firework, causing it to be much more powerful.