House explosion that rocked suburb near US capital blamed on flare gun

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A major explosion tore through a home in the suburbs of the US capital on Monday, authorities said, with video posted on social media showing a powerful blast followed by a large fire that lit up the night sky.

Police were investigating a residence where a suspect had discharged a flare gun, and as officers attempted to execute a search warrant, “the suspect discharged several rounds inside the home,” the Arlington County Police Department said in a statement.

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“Subsequently, an explosion occurred at the residence and officers continue to investigate the circumstances of the explosion.”

“I think it blew up the entire duplex,” a neighbor told local media outlet ARLnow. “I’m sure the family next door was evacuated before it blew up, but they lost their home.”

The fire department had been dispatched to the scene as of 8:45 pm (0145 GMT), police said.

Residents in Arlington, in the state of Virginia across the Potomac River from Washington, were told to shelter in place by the local government.

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