It's the first fireworks fatality since the state legalized the explosives in 2012

By Adam Carlson
Updated July 05, 2015 03:50 PM
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A 22-year-old Maine man was the state’s first fireworks fatality since legalization after he set one off on his head on the Fourth of July, the Associated Press reports.

Devon Staples had been celebrating the holiday at a friend’s home in Calais, a state Department of Public Safety spokesperson told the AP. The group had been drinking before Staples placed a mortar tube on his head and set it off, according to the Portland Press Herald. The incident occurred at about 10 p.m. local time.

Staples was killed instantly by the explosion, the spokesperson said.

His death is the state’s first fireworks fatality since they were legalized on Jan. 1, 2012, officials said, according to the AP.

Staples, who was recently engaged, used to work at Disney World where he dressed up as characters including Gaston from Beauty and the Beast.

“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,” his brother Cody Staples told New York’s Daily News.