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Turlock man guilty of illegally possessing explosive

A Turlock man has been convicted in federal court on charges that stemmed from the discovery of a mortar round in his home, which prompted an evacuation of the Turlock neighborhood in March.

Daniel Sandoval-Arce, 42, of Turlock pleaded guilty earlier this week to being an illegal alien in possession of a firearm.

In March the Turlock Police Department was serving a search warrant on Sandoval-Arce’s residence in the 1000 block of Carrousel Court. The search warrant was in relation to a narcotics investigation.

At the home investigators found more than 300 marijuana plants being grown, as well as seven firearms, including an illegal assault rifle. A search of a bedroom also yielded a 60-millimeter mortar round, which prompted a hiatus in the search and an evacuation of the neighborhood.

The neighborhood, which had five other homes in addition to the one being searched, was evacuated and cordoned off, including Summerfaire Park across the street. The area was reopened about four hours after the initial discovery.

The Explosives Ordinance Team from the Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department handled the disposal of the mortar. The mortar was eventually determined to be inert.

Sandoval-Arce is scheduled to be sentenced on Jan. 7, 2019.