Detectives discovered several explosives devices and items inside a Chula Vista apartment following an investigation into a fire.
David Wasson, 32, was arrested in connection to the fire that began around 2 p.m. on Monday inside a unit at the Seawind Apartments on 4th Avenue near Naples Street.
According to the Chula Vista Police Department (CVPD), detectives found Molotov cocktails, ammunition, gasoline, an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) and manufactured "zip" guns inside the apartment during an investigation.
Witnesses told police they saw a man running away from the building after the fire began. Others, like resident Cindy Wallace, reported hearing multiple explosions coming from the apartment.
Cell phone video of the fire also appeared to show an explosion inside the apartment.
Wallace told NBC 7 that she was able to get out of her apartment safely with the help of two Good Samaritans. She was given oxygen by paramedics but declined to go the emergency room.
Two people suffered burns from the fire, including Wasson, police said. The fire also displaced approximately 20 residents in the apartment complex and caused about $225,000 dollars in damage.
Wasson was later arrested and taken to UCSD Hospital for treatment. Police say he initially lied to officers about his identity but they were able to identify him. Wasson also had an outstanding felony warrant.
He claimed that the fire began while he was cooking and his shirt also caught fire, according to police. He removed his shirt and threw it onto gasoline containers inside the apartment before running away.
Fire officials found what they believed to be possible explosive devices inside the apartment--prompting a response from the San Diego County Sheriff's Department Bomb/Arson Unit.
Chula Vista police confirmed on Wednesday the existence of the explosive devices. The discovery has shocked some residents who spoke with NBC 7.
“I really do want to move, that is scary,” resident Vanessa Jennings said.
“It’s shocking to see that, to hear about it. In something as small as this, as to why you have that kind of thing--ammunition I can understand to a certain degree, but IED's and stuff like that. Why is that in your apartment? Why, why?” resident Austin Schieck said.
At this time, police say Wasson is not involved with any criminal or terrorist group. The cause of the fire is "undetermined," officials said.
Wasson will be in a Chula Vista court on Friday for his arraignment.