On May 17, 2017, around 2:15 p.m., 2 men came to the Yarnell Sheriff’s sub-station and told a Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office supervisor they found a box of dynamite. Both indicated they were hiking in the Skull Valley area and came across a partially exposed metal lock box. After taking the box home, they cut the lock off and opened the box to find it contained several sticks of dynamite. The two men then brought the box to the Yarnell Sheriff’s sub-station.
Deputies placed the box in an unoccupied section of the station parking lot and due to the risk of detonation, several nearby areas were evacuated including the Yarnell Justice Court, a local church, an access road, and a few homes in the vicinity. The Department of Public Safety bomb squad was notified and asked to respond.
Just after 5:00 p.m., the DPS bomb squad arrived and determined there were about 25 one pound sticks of dynamite in the box. Officers placed the box in a controlled environment for a ride to a remote area north of Peeples Valley. At that location, with Yarnell Fire Officials standing by, the dynamite was detonated and rendered safe.
The origin of the dynamite is unknown at this time.