CPD: Oakley Man Arrested After Pipe Bomb Found During Traffic Stop in Clayton

June 26, 2014 · 44 comments

A 19-year-old Oakley man was arrested in Clayton late last night after police found a pipe bomb during a traffic stop, according to Clayton Police Chief Chris Thorsen.

Clayton Police officers made the traffic stop for a minor vehicle code violation on Clayton Rd. near Mtichell Canyon shortly before midnight. During a search of the driver, officers located a pipe bomb in his pocket, Chief Thorsen said.

Members of the Walnut Creek Police Department Bomb Disposal Unit responded and rendered the device safe.

The suspect, Joseph Nichols, was booked on felony charges for possession of a destructive device, Chief Thorsen said.

1 Don June 26, 2014 at 10:20 AM

Small bomb or large pockets?

2 Smart,Goodlooking&Debonaire June 26, 2014 at 10:27 AM

whats the problem here? doesnt everyone do this?

3 Mr. Pink June 26, 2014 at 10:31 AM

I wonder what prompted the vehicle search for a minor vehicle code violation?

4 anony June 26, 2014 at 10:35 AM

“Found a pipe bomb during a traffic stop”. Gets pulled over for a minor vehicle code, gets searched (illegally presumably) then gets arrested for a pipe bomb in his pocket?? Bad luck that’s why you don’t drive through here so you don’t get the shakedown. You know you have the right to decline to a search without “looking suspicious” right? Poor kid

5 lights and sirens June 26, 2014 at 10:38 AM

Probation maybe? Funny how they leave that out of the story. Too bad of what as illegal search the guy won’t be charged. And will most likely get away with it!

6 Snoop June 26, 2014 at 10:40 AM

Wow.. look at all the informative posts & words of wisdom on his FaceBook account:

August 27, 2013
Who need weed!?!??

August 23, 2013
I love my mentality. Cause when people say I’m not “at their level” or “their more mature than me” I just laugh.

May 19, 2013
True friends show their true colors when your on house arrest. Real S+*t

May 21, 2013
$$ I can not wait till I’m f*_*in rich. $$$$ just watch. $$$&& It’s comin soon $$$

7 Gargoyle Socks June 26, 2014 at 10:50 AM

Are you happy to see me or is that a pipe bomb in your pocket?

8 PhilthyPHRESH June 26, 2014 at 11:18 AM

Let’s embrace the rich diversity of our non section 8 residents and the pipe bombers they offer us

9 LTG June 26, 2014 at 11:26 AM

Officers might have asked he was showing so “excited”, and the idiot might have said, “search me”…and there comes the rest of the story.

10 jen a June 26, 2014 at 11:31 AM

I love that peeps are saying the search was done illegally. If you are pulled over for a violation you have the right to be searched.

Don’t do stupid things and you won’t need to worry.

11 Guap June 26, 2014 at 11:38 AM

NEVER give up your 4th Amendment Right!

12 Why assume it was an illegal search? June 26, 2014 at 11:49 AM

People consent to searches all the time, even when they’re carrying contraband. Cops can be very persuasive, while still working within the law.

Chances are, this guy isn’t a terrorist. He just wanted to make a loud boom on the 4th. I’m guessing the punishment will fit the crime.

13 White Boy Fresh June 26, 2014 at 11:50 AM

Thug life!!!!! Hahahahahahaha
A pipe bomb? what a lame

14 Cowellian June 26, 2014 at 12:02 PM

Send him out into a big open field with his pipe bomb and detonate them where no one else gets hurt.

15 Z-Man June 26, 2014 at 12:03 PM

I am just glad it was found that the pipe bomb was identified as a safe pipe bomb!

16 Hey Joe? June 26, 2014 at 12:18 PM

What were you thinking?

17 TinFoiler June 26, 2014 at 12:33 PM

jen a – LOL, “you have the right to be searched”.
Huh? That qualifies as the most ignorant post of the day.
Yeah, you don’t need to worry when they decide to do a cavity search of You and Your friends anus & vajayjay with the SAME GLOVE
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=anD7KYQMT4U
I guess it’s all for the greater good, right?

The dude needs to be slapped for driving through clayton after sundown! Those clowns don’t do a dayum thing all day long – But Oh, At night – Boss Hog & Cletus will be pulling you over if your car has not been washed.
Should have read the Claycord Police Log – Pretty much shows this to be true.

18 ConcordMike June 26, 2014 at 12:34 PM

Too bad the bomb didn’t prematurely go off while he was driving down the secluded stretch of Marsh Creek Road. One less expense to deal with in the jails.

19 SF CityGirl June 26, 2014 at 12:42 PM

So #4 he was on house arrest at some point according to post #6. So the Dbag is not some poor unlucky kid. He’s a POS.

20 RealityCheck June 26, 2014 at 12:46 PM

Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ahahahaaaahaa….
…..Loser.

21 @ jen a June 26, 2014 at 1:16 PM

“If you are pulled over for a violation you have the right to be searched.” Says the iphone using prius driving mcdonalds eating mindless fool…

22 @ tinfoiler June 26, 2014 at 1:20 PM

Couldn’t agree more

23 Smart,Goodlooking&Debonaire June 26, 2014 at 1:54 PM

obama voter.

24 Anonymous June 26, 2014 at 2:20 PM

Here is the 411 on searches. First an officer can frisk someone for weapons if he can articulate a reason to be leery..(Terry v Ohio)

Second he can search for ID if the person doesn’t produce any. Happens all the time . Vehicle code says with no ID the driver can be arrested.

Third he can have consent.

Fourth he can search with reasonable cause to believe there is evidence of a crime.

The cops know this stuff. I love the posters who are experts on these matters. Especially the ones who instruct people not to roll their windows down at a DUI checkpoint.

Lot of dimwit ery comes to the forefront in these issues.

25 PHILTHYphresh June 26, 2014 at 3:32 PM

Enforcement officers feel entitled to do as they please, completely disregarding the acts, statures, and limitations which govern their own law society. Persons that are not a part of law society should not be governed by these acts, statures, and limitation at all, because these are not civil laws.

26 @tinfoiler June 26, 2014 at 3:49 PM

Great work Clayton PD! You guys do a great job! Keep a look out for tinfoiler on her way from Brentwood!

27 itsme June 26, 2014 at 4:06 PM

@anony……”poor kid”?

28 Marianne June 26, 2014 at 4:41 PM

Wow, really?

29 yay! CPD! June 26, 2014 at 5:34 PM

JSYK, we don’t give a damp if thugs from east county want to drive through our beautiful, safe little town. Take Hwy 4 and keep going to your final hood destination, be it Richmond or the like. If you look suspicious, dawned right CPD will stop your ratchet ass.

30 GetTheFactsStraight June 26, 2014 at 5:36 PM

#24 gave good answers, but left out two more categories.

1) Considering the suspect’s comment about being on house arrest (aka Electronic Home Detention), there is also a good chance he is on probation. Most types of misdemeanor or felony probation include what is called a “search clause.” The search clause gives law enforcement the right to search you and your possessions without your consent or a search warrant.

2) If the suspect was driving on a suspended driver’s license, he can be arrested and taken to jail. He is then subject to “search incident to arrest.”

Short answer….there is no short answer when it comes to 4th amendment law. My advise as an expert in these matters; don’t drive, or walk for that matter, with a pipe bomb in your pocket dumb-ass.

31 What about MY rights..... June 26, 2014 at 6:45 PM

I have the right to NOT BE BLOWN UP by some Inbred Backwoods Moron from Oakley.

32 just me June 26, 2014 at 7:11 PM

Have to love some of the comments from people on here. So someone was driving a car and had a pipe bomb but you want to say the PD did an illegal search?

A few questions for you that believe the PD was wrong here-1) were you there? 2) would you like to know your neighbor or the person driving next to you happens to have a bomb in their car? 3) what were the “owners” plans for this bomb?

I say bravo Clayton PD-we don’t know all the details but a minor vehicle code violation could be many things from a broken tail light to no lights on at all etc. You can laugh all you want but I have been told by members of Clayton PD, CHP, and CoCo SO that Marsh Creek Road is one of the main routes drug suppliers use to come into Central Contra Costa County. Much of the Meth in the area is produced throughout the valley and brought in via back roads where there is less law enforcement. I can’t imagine if this had happened at 3pm in the afternoon, would some of these same people complaining about Clayton PD had happened to drive past a scene of Clayton PD, Concord PD, WCPD Bomb Squad and possibly ConFire. You probably would be feeling very differently…

33 Atticus Thraxx June 26, 2014 at 8:02 PM

I and as far as I can tell none of you know what this kids intention was, what drew police interest or what the circumstance of the stop were, so why even bother speculate? Cop supporters or detractors both.
They are charging the lad with a felony and he’s in a good bit of trouble. That is a fact.

34 pasty faced immaculate driver June 26, 2014 at 8:22 PM

Tinfoiler you nailed it about not driving through Clayton after sundown. It’s practically a one-road town, and everyone knows that if you try to make it through with so much as a running light out you will get pulled over. I imagine most of the fines go to Clayton residents themselves, but they must be ok with that level of “quality control” or they would’ve said something by now.

Anyone remember about twenty years ago a local high school footballer, who was black, was raising a ruckus saying the Clayton cops kept pulling him over because he was black? I wanted so bad to be able to tell that kid, actually, I keep getting pulled over on flimsey pretenses, too. And I’m a super-square looking white dude.

The unaware should take heed: Clayton is not safe to drive in after dark.

35 Cowellian June 26, 2014 at 8:37 PM

Atticus,
You know that jumping to conclusions is the only exercise that some of us get around here.

36 Clayton Squirrel June 26, 2014 at 9:11 PM

I have driven around Clayton after dark for 21 years without ever being pulled over at night. I feel very safe and don’t give it a second thought.

37 Yet another reason to live in Clayton June 27, 2014 at 12:18 AM

I have lived in Clayton 30 years. Have yet to be pulled over.
Why? Maybe because I follow the rules!!!
I’m shocked at the pure stupidity of some of you!
Are you all not understanding that the guy had a live pipe bomb?
Thank God he got stopped!!! Who knows where he was heading!
The WC bomb squad determined it was a real pipe bomb.
Thank you Clayton PD!!!!!!

38 anon June 27, 2014 at 2:24 AM

Honest Officer– these pants I have on are NOT my pants – honest …..

39 DWM June 27, 2014 at 10:16 AM

I’m not saying anything about this particular case because I don’t know the details.

However, you do have the right to deny searches. If you’re not doing anything wrong and an officer asks you if he can search your car. you ALWAYS say “I do not consent to searches”. You may not know what is in your car. A friend maybe left a joint in the car. Maybe you bought the car used and there are drugs stashed in the trunk somewhere. Who knows.

If you don’t consent to the search it makes it easier for lawyers in a court of law to protect you.

Again this is if you aren’t doing anything wrong. If you aren’t doing anything wrong a cop has no reason whatsoever to search your vehicle. People need to know their rights and stop giving them away so freely.

40 matt June 27, 2014 at 2:50 PM

every comment on here is so stupid, that dude was caught for a reason, people are saying that the cop shouldnt of searched, well guess what that cop saved lives so who the hell cares, that bomb could have went off in a school, or a coffee shop, you have no idea what the guys intentions were. No one needs a pipe bomb, i swear some of the comments are so ignorant, all people care about is their rights for this story, the dude had a bomb.

41 matt June 27, 2014 at 2:53 PM

p.s. cops can search with probable cause, the kid was probably shakin like he caught the holy ghost.

42 uhhh June 29, 2014 at 7:46 PM

Joe had no intension of using the bomb. He was trying to discard of the bomb safely. He is a good guy and everyone saying bad things about hom had no idea who he is or what he has been through.

43 Cowellian June 29, 2014 at 9:08 PM

Well, that sure cleared that up, . . .

44 Joseph nichols June 30, 2014 at 7:27 PM

It was an illegal search. End of story. I’m fresh out. Charges dropped due to illegal search

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