Michael Turney Pleads Guilty to Possessing 26 Pipe Bombs; Father of Missing Girl Planned to Blow Up Union Hall, Cops Say
The stepfather of a girl who went missing in 2001 pleaded guilty on Tuesday to possessing 26 pipe bombs, the U.S. Attorney's Office reports today.
Michael Turney, 62, (right) had reportedly planned to use the bombs to launch a suicide attack on a local union hall with which he had a dispute.
Turney faces a maximum 10 years in prison when he's sentenced on June 21.
Cops don't consider him a suspect in the disappearance of his 17-year-old stepdaughter, Alissa Turney, who was a junior at Paradise Valley High School. But even though the girl left a note and went missing after getting in an argument with her step-dad, police believe foul play was involved.
The case received nationwide attention last August, when it was featured on ABC News' Primetime.
Turney's guilty plea doesn't shed much light on what happened to the girl, but puts the arguably more disturbing issue of the potential bomb attack to rest.
The pipe bombs, plus two fire bombs and two silencers, were found by Phoenix police after a December 11, 2008 raid on Turney's home at 17218 North 34th Street.
Here's what Dennis Burke, U.S. Attorney in Arizona, said in a news release about Turney's plea:
As a result of this prosecution, a dangerous man is off the streets. His self-built supply of bombs had the potential for catastrophic consequences... I applaud the work of ATF, FBI and the Phoenix Police for their excellent investigation, while removing these explosive devices safely from the neighborhood.
Watch out, Al-Qaeda -- you've got competition in Arizona.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss Phoenix New Times' biggest stories.