Gang Task Force's Building Rigged to Explode in Hemet

By Olsen Ebright
|  Thursday, Dec 31, 2009  |  Updated 2:43 PM PDT
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Gang task force members in Hemet are lucky to alive Thursday after they noticed their office was flooded with natural gas in an apparently deliberate attempt to cause a deadly explosion, police said.

"It was basically designed so that once somebody came in and moved around a little bit, it would have gone off," said Hemet police Lt. Duane Wisehart. "At the very least, it would have leveled the building and killed whoever was inside."

Wisehart told the Southwest Riverside News Network that there is no doubt the trap was meant for members of the Hemet/San Jacinto Valley Gang Task Force.

Officers arriving for work were saved by their instincts."They were able to recognize right away that something was wrong," Wisehart told the North County Times.

Investigators discovered the trap about 8:30 a.m. in a nondescript building in the 500 block of St. John Place.

No suspects have been identified.

"We are lucky they found what they did," Wisehart said. "Otherwise someone could have been seriously hurt or killed."

Editor's note: Earlier reports portrayed the threat as a stand-alone bomb. The story has been updated to reflect the threat involved natural gas.

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