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Bomb squad blows up bomb in park

Posted: October 22, 2008 3:59 p.m.
Updated: December 23, 2008 5:00 a.m.
 
The L.A. County Sheriff's bomb squad detonated a pipe bomb on a dirt hill in Central Park on Wednesday, hours after city worker Alfredo Moraza found the explosive in the Valencia Heritage Park parking lot.

The explosion attracted no public attention as the park was empty on the windy afternoon.

Moraza was not aware the wrapped object was a bomb when he picked it up around 7 a.m. during his routine cleaning duties.

"I thought it was a toy or something," Moraza said. "I never knew it was a bomb ‘til I showed my crew leaders. I've never seen anything like this before."

Heritage Park was empty and quiet, according to Moraza.

When he returned to the city workers' headquarters at Central Park and showed supervisors the object in his truck, concerned park officials contacted the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's station.

At the time, city park employees were enjoying an annual picnic in Central Park.

They were not informed of a potential threat, according to Dave Christianson, assistant park supervisor.
At about noon, deputies and the sheriff's bomb squad confirmed the object was a pipe bomb that had been camouflaged with newspaper and duct tape.

The device consisted of a black powder filler and galvanized steel pipe, according to Greg Everett, bomb squad detective.

"Someone could've gotten killed had it exploded there," said Everett, referring to Heritage Park.
It was just lying there in the park, where kids and families play, he said.

"Sheriff's deputies are very concerned," he said.

Moraza and a deputy drove back to Heritage Park to look for incriminating notes or other evidence but found nothing.

Detectives have no leads and will use the remains of the bomb as evidence.

Fingerprints are often left on the sticky side of the tape, Everett said.

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