NEWTON – A 41-year-old woman appeared in Catawba County District Court on Thursday before Judge Robert A. Mullinax after Catawba County Sheriff’s deputies arrested her Wednesday.

CCSO Capt. Jason Reid said deputies discovered a homemade explosive device during the arrest.

The arrest came as part of Wednesday’s “M80” drug offender round-up.

Deputies arrested the woman at a Chaucer Street residence in Conover on a bill of indictment from the Catawba County Grand Jury. Once inside the residence, Reid said deputies saw the device on a TV stand in a bed room.

“They (the deputies) were not expecting that device to be there,” Reid said. “I believe they asked the young lady who was there and she said she had no idea why the device was out. Anybody who was in and out of the room would have seen it there.”

Rebecca Lynn Rose, 41, of Conover, was charged with one felony count of heroin trafficking, one felony count of methamphetamine possession and one felony count of possession of a weapon of mass destruction.

Mullinax explained the severity of the charges against Rose.

Rose requested a court-appointed attorney, and Jeremy Milsaps was assigned to her case.

The device contained buckshot and black powder, Reid said. The device looks like a pipe bomb, and had a long, black fuse leading into the tan tube.

The container is a speed loader for a muzzle-loading firearm, a narcotics investigator said.

The Gastonia Bomb Squad was called to diffuse the device. Reid said they later told him the device had the potential to kill several people in the room.

Reid said the CCSO has contacted the ATF for further assistance with the device.

“These officers who go out, they treat everyone the same, but they can’t let their guards down,” Reid said Wednesday afternoon.

Rose is held at the Catawba County Detention Center under a $50,000 secured bond. She will next appear in Catawba County Superior Court on May 1 on the indictments.

Tom Neas is the crime and courts reporter at the Hickory Daily Record.