Donald McMahan (Source: Maricopa County Sheriff's Office)
Seven sticks of dynamite found in southeast Phoenix was detonated by a bomb squad. (Source: Maricopa County Sheriff's Office)
Another 85 sticks was discovered in a duffel bag and hidden within 30 feet of a large apartment complex in central Phoenix. (Source: Maricopa County Sheriff's Office)
Dozens of blasting caps, fuses and various explosive paraphernalia were also found. (Source: Maricopa County Sheriff's Office)
PHOENIX (CBS5) -
A stash of explosive devices were found near a Phoenix apartment complex, according to the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office.
Authorities said they received information about some dynamite last week, from a woman arrested on an outstanding warrant in Buckeye.
Information received from the woman led to the discovery of seven sticks of dynamite, near Baseline and Miller Road. CBS 5 News was told that the dynamite was detonated by the Sheriff's Office Bomb Squad.
Additional information then led to the arrest of a second suspect, Donald McMahan, and the discovery of another 85 sticks of dynamite stuffed into a duffle bag and hidden within 30 feet of a large apartment complex at 24th Avenue and Thomas Road in Phoenix, according to Sheriff Joe Arpaio.
"You think about a dangerous situation," said Arpaio. "You could blow up a whole neighborhood if you have enough dynamite."
Deputies also found dozens of blasting caps, fuses and various explosive paraphernalia. Deputies located those items and detonated them on site as well, Arpaio said.
McMahan reportedly admitted to stealing the dynamite from a central Phoenix storage warehouse in early June in hopes of finding a buyer.
MCSO officials said that he kept the explosives with him in a hotel near 24th Avenue and Thomas, where he was staying for about a month, before hiding it in the locations deputies searched.
The hotel was within a 100 yards of both an elementary and a middle school. It was a potentially deadly situation - had the dynamite detonated, Arpaio said.
The Buckeye and Phoenix police departments assisted MCSO with the investigation.
Sheriff's detectives said that all the dynamite in the investigation has been located and secured, but they want to be sure.
"Our intelligence shows about 100 sticks that we accounted for, but you never know," said Arpaio. "I'm just concerned there may be more sticks out there."
Arpaio's explosive experts warn the public that any explosives, including dynamite, that are found should be considered potentially very dangerous and unstable.
The sheriff cautions anyone in the community who sees something closely resembling dynamite to contact the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office at 602-876 1011.
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