Lehigh Valley

Allentown car explosion: Roads cleaned, to be reopened later in the week

ALLENTOWN, Pa. - People who live near the scene of the car explosion in Allentown were hoping to get back to their homes Wednesday, but it appears that won't be the case.

Officials were hoping to reopen the 700 block of Turner Street late in the day Wednesday, but an officer at the scene said it won't be open for several more days.

ATF agents wrapped up their investigation at the scene Tuesday. A sanitation crew worked Wednesday to clean the streets and sidewalks.

The 700 block is still closed and residents there need police to escort them in and out of their homes.

Police, the ATF, FBI and other officials rushed to the scene around 9:30 p.m. to find burning car pieces and human remains all around the area.

Jacob Schmoyer, 26, his 2-year-old son, Jonathan, and David Hallman, 66, were killed in the blast. Investigators said Hallman and Schmoyer were friends.

Family members said Schmoyer loved his son "JJ." They said he was fascinated by fireworks, rockets and pyrotechnics, but they say there's no way he'd even think of harming his child or anyone else.

Hallman's niece described him as a carefree guy who loved to have a good time. She said Hallman's dog, Skippy, was with him at the time of the explosion and survived. He's recovering at an animal hospital.

So far authorities have not said what exploded and how. They have also not said whether it was intentional or an accident.

Investigators said it was an isolated incident and there is no threat to the public. Lehigh County DA Jim Martin said officials believe the "perpetrator was killed in the incident."

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