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Felon sentenced to 6 years for Halloween explosion in Rancho Mirage

Michael Hardisty
Michael Hardisty

A convicted felon today is facing six years in state prison after pleading guilty to placing a bomb inside a cement trash can on Halloween 2020, causing an explosion that flung debris onto Highway 111 in Rancho Mirage.  

Michael Henry Hardisty, 58, of Cathedral City, pleaded guilty on Tuesday to one felony count of possession of a destructive device and a misdemeanor count of vandalism. He was immediately sentenced to six years.  

He was arrested May 19, 2021, after a nearly seven-month investigation that involved the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

The explosion was reported on Oct. 31, 2020, on Highway 111 between Peterson Road and Country Club Drive in Rancho Mirage, according to the Riverside County Sheriff's Department.

Jason Hershey

Sgt. Steve Davis said the debris field extended across six lanes, though no one was injured.

Another man -- 49-year-old Jason Hershey -- was also taken into custody. He pleaded not guilty on Aug. 3 to two felony counts of possession of a destructive device and vandalism, according to court records.

Hershey has a felony settlement conference scheduled for Oct. 25.   

Hardisty and Hershey both have felony convictions in Riverside County that include burglary, receiving stolen property and possession of a controlled substance for sale.

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Article Topic Follows: Crime

City News Service


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