Cudjoe Key – Deputies responded to Doubloon Lane early today after neighbors reported hearing a loud booming sound, possibly an explosion.
When Deputies Massiel Brimo, Spencer Bryan and Chris Duncan arrived at 12:30 a.m., a number of residents were standing outside their homes. They told the deputies a truck had just left one of the homes on Doubloon Lane and appeared to be in a hurry. The deputies managed to catch up to the truck and pull it over; the driver, 45 year old Fredrick Lytton, appeared to be impaired; he said he had just left the house at 131 Doubloon Lane because “a bomb just went off”. The deputies asked him if anyone at the house was hurt and he said yes, a man was in the house and was hurt.
Deputies returned to the house where the explosion occurred; a man and a woman were underneath the house. They were asked to come away from the house for their own safety. Sherry and Derwood Stewart told the deputies their son, 37 year old Brett Stewart, and his friend Lytton had been drinking and had blown something up under the house using welding torches. Stewart was upstairs in the house in the shower with the window open. The deputies could hear him through the open window moaning in pain. He couldn’t hear them calling to him, however, because his ears had been damaged by the noise of the explosion.
Paramedics were called to the scene. Sgt. Tom Walker responded and was able to shut off the welding torches that were under the house and render the scene safe. Deputies were then able to enter and bring Stewart out of the house for treatment of his injuries. He suffered burns on his torso and he was transported to Lower Keys Medical Center for treatment.
Lytton was also transported to the hospital to be checked for injuries. Before his transport, he told Deputy Bryan he and Stewart were downstairs drinking when Stewart said “watch this”. He grabbed a black trash bag and began to fill it with acetylene and oxygen from a welder he uses to work on cars under the house. Steward said as the bag began to expand they both had their arms wrapped around it. It exploded in their arms injuring both men.