North Tonawanda Police: Item in Timothy Payne’s vehicle not an explosive device

Local News

North Tonawanda Police shared an update Wednesday saying that Army veteran Timothy Payne didn’t threaten anyone directly to their knowledge, but he did make some people in City Hall uneasy following conversations with Payne that, at times, did not make sense.

North Tonawanda Police executed a search warrant on Timothy Payne’s vehicle Tuesday for any evidence related to any possible threats. 

Authorities found nothing that would indicate Payne was planning any type of event. Payne appeared to be living out of the vehicle since traveling to New York in early June. 

In a release North Tonawanda Police Captain Thomas Krantz says: 

Mr. Payne had been traveling to different venues to seek employment opportunities, express his concerns about his personal causes and things of that nature. He did not always make sense to the people he was talking to and appeared to make people feel uneasy, but never threatened anyone to our knowledge.

Investigators determined the item removed from his vehicle was a hitch lock and not an explosive device, which they say could resemble a pipe bomb.

“The North Tonawanda Police Department will be working closely with the Niagara County District Attorney’s office to resolve this case in the most appropriate manner that takes into consideration the needs of Mr. Payne who served his country honorably and was severely injured during his service, both physically and emotionally,” Krantz said. 

Payne remains in custody and is scheduled for a hearing in North Tonawanda City Court on Friday. As of Wednesday night, he still only faces a felony weapons possession charge.

Payne’s father, Douglas Payne, says his son has worked hard to overcome challenges and has done a lot of good by giving inspirational speeches and counseling other soldiers and veterans.

Douglas Payne said, in the past three or four years, something changed.

“Tim’s behavior became more and more erratic, even though he was doing good things, there was still a fringe that was very erratic and didn’t make much sense, irrational, just about,” Douglas Payne said.

He says he’s relieved his son is now getting the help he needs at the VA.

“These people know how to work with soldiers. He’s amongst his peers, so, he’s not alone,” Douglas Payne said. “He just turned himself in for help. Although he might not realize it at the time, I think subconsciously, that’s what he did.”

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