The FBI and local police first arrived at Conaway's Illinois home around 7 p.m. yesterday after receiving reports around 1 p.m. that he'd called members of the St. Louis Muslim community making threats against them and President Barack Obama. When the officers arrived at the home, the 50-year-old Conaway greeted them with a belt packed with what looked like C4 explosives strapped around his waist and a curling iron in his hand that he said was a triggering device to ignite two large 55-gallon drums filled with explosives.
The C4 turned out to be Play-Doh. The drums were filled with water.
Still, the cops took his threat seriously, evacuating nearby homes and negotiating with Conaway to surrender and release his wife and son. The standoff ended peacefully at 2:15 this morning.
Conaway's Facebook page offers some clues into his state of mind.
In several posts Conaway complains about his insomnia -- at one point being awake 92 hours -- and a custody battle with his ex-wife in which he makes repeated physical threats against a man named Brian.
Hours before yesterday's standoff, Conaway wrote on Facebook of his plan to burn six Qurans. He also wrote on Facebook during the standoff, telling friends to come to his home to document what was happening.
"i need everbody with a camera phone or video phone or video cameras to come to 9030 summit drive in fairview heights illinois. the media and your goverment thinks this isa joke. im not joking"Another post from last month reads: "sometimes one needs to take justice in their own hands.that is a sure way to make sure they get what is coming to them.i bebeive in being judge and jury."