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Couple arrested after blast at house plead guilty to federal explosives, gun charges

A Centre County couple who were arrested after an explosion in May at their Centre Hall home pleaded guilty Wednesday to federal explosives and firearms violations.

U.S. Attorney Bruce D. Brandler said James Woodring, 50, and his 34-year-old wife, Christina, were buying and upgrading the power of commercial-grade fireworks without a license

James Woodring, a convicted felon, also was charged with firearms violations when investigators found guns in his home, Brandler said. Investigators said one of those guns was stolen.

James Woodring pleaded guilty before U.S. Middle District Judge Malachi E. Mannion in Williamsport to charges of manufacturing explosives and being a felon in possession of firearms. He admitted having between 250 and 500 pounds of illegal explosives, Brandler said.

He said Christina Woodring pleaded guilty to a count of conspiring to manufacture and deal in explosives.

The charges to which James Woodring pleaded each carry penalties of up to 10 years in prison. His wife’s charge carries a potential 5-year jail term. The ATF, state police and police in Centre Hall and Springettsbury Township participated in the investigation.

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