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Collection of Bombs Astounds Authorities: What's in Your Neighbor's House?

In 2001, cute, smart Paradise Valley High School student

Alissa Turney goes missing. Police suspect foul play.

This week, her stepfather -- a Vietnam veteran and former sheriff's deputy -- is nabbed in a house full of more bombs than police have ever seen before.

What's truly stunning in this case is the size of the guy's arsenal.

Police told reporters at a news conference that investigators had developed new information in the case: Alissa Turney had died soon after being reported missing. The cops wanted a handwriting -- or DNA -- sample from Michael Turney and were serving a search warrant when they caught him going outside to get the mail.

What they found in his house caused them to evacuate a neighborhood.

In a 

news release this morning, police spokesman Sergeant Andy Hill writes:

This turned out to be a great decision as Mr. Turney was not only armed with two handguns, multiple magazines, and a knife, but his home was later found to be filled with numerous loaded handguns, rifles, and 34 improvised explosive devices (I.E.D.s).  These devices, according to Phoenix Police Bomb Squad investigators are "pipe bombs." 

This is the largest seizure of I.E.D.s the Phoenix Police Department has ever made...ATF officials at the scene were also not aware of a larger seizure of this type in the Phoenix area.  Phoenix Bomb Squad investigators stated one of the pipe bombs was the largest they had ever seen and was capable of destroying the house.

Whoa. This nutty Rambo was apparently planning on doing some demolition. But where? In one news report, an unidentified neighbor says Turney had grand conspiracy theories involving the government and his stepdaughter.

It looks like police got him just in time. 


UPDATE 12-13-08: Cops say the stepfather, Michael Turney, is not named as a suspect in Alissa Turney's disappearance, and that the arrests were based solely on the suspected weapons violations. Turney reportedly confessed he had hoped to blow up a local union hall. -- Ray Stern

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Ray Stern has worked as a newspaper reporter in Arizona for more than two decades. He's won numerous awards for his reporting, including the Arizona Press Club's Don Bolles Award for Investigative Journalism.
Contact: Ray Stern