A California bomb squad detonated 100 pounds of explosives and chemicals found in a Hollister home Tuesday.
Law enforcement said the homeowner, who was not identified, had been collecting military weapons for 20 years.
Hazardous materials were found in the man’s home during a robbery investigation. The discovery prompted a hazmat evacuation of 20 homes in the area. The Red Cross was called in to assist the displaced neighbors.
Monterey County Bomb Squad officers described the man as a hoarder. His home was so packed with explosives and weaponry that there was little space for crews to move around the home, KION-TV reported.
Authorities say the homeowner bought and sold military collectibles for two decades. He allegedly had two warehouses full of the items but he recently consolidated them at his home. The San Benito County Environmental Health Department says the homeowner has a permit to sell these kinds of items, but it had no idea he had so many explosives at his residence.
The homeowner has been cooperating with authorities. A report is being forwarded to the District Attorney’s office for a recommendation of possible charges relating to the possession and storage of dangerous and hazardous materials, the Hollister Free Lance reported.
The home has received the all clear for hazardous materials by the SBCEHD.
The items were taken to a local airport and detonated Tuesday.
The house has been broken into before. Military guns were taken but later tracked down and returned to the homeowner. Hollister police said several guns were stolen from the home in the latest burglary.
Image credit: Flickr Creative Commons / Lnk.Si, KION-TV