ANAHEIM, CA – In November and December of 2015, three separate pipe bomb incidents were reported in Anaheim. The first incident occurred on November 13, 2015 at the Lowe’s store in the 1500 block of N. Lemon in Anaheim. Patrons at the store located an undetonated pipe bomb outside the main exit doors. The Orange County Sheriff’s bomb squad collected the device and rendered it safe. Nearly one month later, on December 11, 2015, a resident located another undetonated pipe bomb at the base of a utility pole in the alley in the 300 block of S. Claudina. The Orange County Sheriff’s bomb squad responded, detonated that device in place and collected it as evidence. Finally, on January 4, 2016, APD officers responded to a business in the 2800 block of E. White Star regarding an explosive device which had been detonated at the location on December 31, 2016. The Orange County Sheriff’s Department bomb squad again responded and collected the remnants of that device.
The investigation following the White Star explosion led Detectives to an employee at the business, Donald Paul Busteed, who admitted to detonating the device. Busteed was arrested for possession of an explosive device and he was booked at the Orange County Jail on bail of $1,000,000. A subsequent search of Busteed’s garage yielded items associated with the manufacture of explosive devices. Busteed pled guilty and was sentenced to Orange County Jail. He was released from custody in mid-January and is currently on probation for the White Star incident.
As the investigation into the Lemon and Claudina incidents continued, Busteed emerged as a person of interest. After forensic testing of the material from all three devices, it is believed Busteed is responsible for the placement of all three explosive devices. As a result, detectives from the Anaheim Police Department Burglary Detail, along with Investigators from the Crime Task Force, arrested Busteed at his place of business in Fountain Valley late Monday afternoon. Detectives then served a search warrant at Busteed’s Anaheim residence with assistance from the Orange County Sheriff’s Department bomb squad, searching for additional evidence.
APD Detectives will be examining all evidence as they continue their investigation into these incidents, which have similarities to the explosion which occurred yesterday (Sunday) afternoon at approximately 1:50 pm. In that incident, APD officers responded to a report of an explosion in the 600 block of N. Anaheim Blvd where the remnants of a detonated pipe bomb were located. The device had been placed at the base of a utility pole in the west alley of Anaheim Blvd., between the pole and a concrete wall. The explosion caused minor damage to the concrete wall and the utility pole. Fortunately there were no injuries. Detectives are exploring the potential of Busteed’s involvement in Sunday’s explosion.
Busteed will be booked at Orange County Jail for possession of explosive devices and probation violations. There is no bail set.
Donald Paul Busteed