February 2, 2005
A Scottsdale man riding a bicycle with potentially explosive devices in his backpack was arrested Monday night.
Scottsdale officer Johnson Braxton was making a traffic stop on Michael Scott Hershberger, 40, when police say they found a concealed .22-caliber pistol with a silencer, containers with black powder and a cylinder wrapped in a rag in his backpack at 10:20 p.m. in the 5600 block of East Thomas Road, Scottsdale detective Sam Bailey said.
Hershberger told police he had the items "to scare someone" and for protection purposes but wouldn’t elaborate, said Tom Mangan, spokesman for the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
The containers were two emptied carbon dioxide cartridges fused together and the powder will be tested for explosiveness, Mangan said. The gun was a semiautomatic handgun that had a defaced serial number. Three knives were found in the backpack, he said.
Hershberger could face federal firearms and explosives charges, Mangan said. "When he was questioned about these items, Hershberger acknowledged it was a type of explosive device," Bailey said.
Hershberger, whose address was not made available, was wanted on a felony warrant out of the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office for misconduct involving weapons, Bailey said.
Hershberger was charged last year with the two counts of misconduct, a marijuana violation, one count of criminal damage and resisting arrest.