Man arrested after 27 guns, hand grenade found at Sandalwood home

Bomb squad called to home on Alden Trace Blvd., police say

By Corley Peel - Reporter

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - After a hand grenade and 27 firearms were found at a Sandalwood home Wednesday afternoon by police looking for drugs, Jacksonville police said a 34-year-old man was arrested.

While narcotics officers were executing a search warrant at a home on East Alden Trace Boulevard just before 4 p.m., they found a military-grade hand grenade with the handle taped, according to police. Police said no evacuations were needed, but the bomb squad was called out to remove the grenade, which was later rendered safe.

After the device was discovered, investigators said they found 20 handguns, five rifles, two shotguns, various ammunition and gun magazines, a bulletproof vest and marijuana in a garage apartment. Joel Miniano was arrested on a charge of possession of marijuana with intent to sell.

Neighbors who know Miniano were surprised that a potentially explosive device would be removed from his home. Others in the neighborhood said they weren't surprised.

Stephanie Brown said Wednesday afternoon wasn't the first time she saw police cars outside the home several houses down from hers.

“We’ve called after hearing gunshots and, at the same time, they were outside that house," Brown said. "That was just a few months ago.”

But she said it was the first time she saw the bomb squad in the neighborhood.

"That was a little worrisome," Brown said. “You never know what somebody has in their house."

Once crime scene tape was taken down, News4Jax noticed that code violation notices had been left on the front door and three cars outside the home. 

“I just hope that they get everything taken care of and everything goes back to being the peaceful, quiet neighborhood that we have," Brown said, adding that she hopes it was the last time she sees the bomb squad on her street.

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