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Man shoots off firework from top of his head, dies instantly

Posted at 8:36 AM, Jul 06, 2015
and last updated 2015-07-06 08:36:56-04

CALAIS, Maine — A man died after he launched a firework off the top of his head Saturday night, authorites said. WCSH reported that 22-year-old Devon Staples, 22, and his friends were drinking at the time of the incident. It reportedly happened in the backyard of one of Staples’ friend’s homes in Calais, Maine.

Staples placed a fireworks mortar tube on his head and set it off, according to the Maine Department of Public Safety. He died instantly after the firework exploded.

The victim’s brother, Cody Staples, told the New York Daily News it was an accident. He said his brother was holding a lighter and it accidentally caused the firework to go off.

“I was the first one who got there. There was no rushing him to the hospital,” said the brother. “There was no Devon left when I got there. It was a freak accident (…) But Devon was not the kind of person who would do something stupid. He was the kind of person who would pretend to do something stupid to make people laugh.”

Staples lived in Orlando where he at one time worked at Disney World. He was most recently working as a dog walker.

Officials say this is the first fireworks-attributed death in Maine since fireworks were legalized two years ago.