MESA, Arizona. – An ex-Marine told authorities he kept a cache of more than 40 pipe bombs in Arizona are home to his wife, who believed they would be needed if the U.S. government collapsed, according to court documents released Friday.
Jeffrey Dennis Metcalf, 51, is facing 40 counts of the production, the sale and possession of prohibited weapons. He was released Thursday on $50,000 bond.
The police discovered 41 pipe bombs in a cooler in Metcalf ‘ s in the garage and one in a backyard trash, the documents state, adding that components to make 30 more were found in his car.
Authorities evacuated several nearby homes, while eight bomb technicians took more than three hours for the safe removal of the bombs and transport for disposal. Each pipe bomb was expanded with shrapnel, she said.
In an interview with officials, Metcalf said that he and his wife are separated and he built the pipe bombs over the past four years at her request. He described her as an “ultra prepper,” who wanted to be ready if the federal government descended into chaos, authorities said.
Metcalf said that he had kept the bombs in his home in Payson for three years, before transporting them to his Mesa home.
The efforts to achieve Metcalf were not immediately successful.
The Arizona Department of Public Safety officials said that the search came after a task force including the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives learned Metcalf was the construction and storage of improvised explosive devices and planned to get rid of them.
Officers conducting surveillance Wednesday reported seeing Metcalf and another man loading black containers, duffel bags and firearms cases in Metcalf the car before Metcalf back home.
State troopers stopped his vehicle later in the day and said they discovered the bomb-making materials. She said Metcalf acknowledged there were pipe bombs in his garage, but said that he was planning to throw them in the lake the next day.
Records show Metcalf was examined in 2008, while those in the U. S. Marine Corps for an imitation IED, authorities said.
A preliminary hearing is set for Sept. 10. A lawyer is not yet named.