District Judge William Herringer heard testimony and arguments Wednesday in a case involving a La Plata County man suspected of creating improvised explosive devices in his home earlier this year.
Nickie Carrillo, 53, was arrested Feb. 28 at his home east of Elmore’s Corner, where La Plata County Sheriff’s deputies found two IEDs in his house while performing an eviction, according to an arrest affidavit.
Carrillo was exempt from the eviction, which required all other occupants of the residence to leave.
Sheriff’s Office Sgt. Tom Cowing, who testified during Wednesday’s motions hearing, said several deputies accompanied him to the residence to assist with multiple occupants believed to be living in the house and outbuildings.
When the officers split up to search the house for occupants, one deputy found an IED on an end table in the living room, according to the affidavit.
The explosive was described as a jelly jar filled with spark plugs and other nuts and bolts, according to the affidavit. On top of the jar was what appeared to be a hollowed out light bulb or globe filled with an amber-colored liquid, and a firecracker duct-taped to the top of the globe.
“He (Carrillo) started stammering, and said something to the effect that he made the device to light things in his burn barrel,” Cowing told the court. “It was within 8 feet of the front door in plain sight.”
Cowing said he found a second explosive device on a dresser in Carrillo’s bedroom.
The IED was a triangular piece of plastic with three shotgun shells attached to it, and a firecracker taped to the shells, according to the affidavit.
Cowing said some of the deputies, who were Iraq War veterans, immediately recognized the devices as IEDs.
Carrillo was then arrested for the explosive devices, Cowing said. He was booked at the La Plata County Jail on suspicion of possessing incendiary devices.
A bomb squad with the Farmington Police Department safely deactivated the IEDs later that day.
Law enforcement later obtained a search warrant for the home and also seized two rifles.
Carrillo, who has a previous felony conviction, is also charged with possession of a weapon by a previous offender.
His trial is set for Feb. 5 and 6 in District Court.