While serving a search warrant, Hesperia station sheriff's officials came upon a live military artillery round in an Apple Valley home late Wednesday night, requiring specialists to come out and detonate the explosive, San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department officials said.


Investigators found a 105-mm military artillery round at the home in the 15700 block of Washoan Road at about 10:30 p.m., Sheriff's spokeswoman Arden Wiltshire said. Sheriff's Bomb and Arson Detail were called then called out.


"It was a highly explosive round," she said. "Just moving it could've set it off."


Officials learned the round had been fired, but it failed to detonate, Wiltshire said, adding it was still highly dangerous.


Authorities took the explosive to an open field where they blew it up, Wiltshire said. Nearby residents were alerted to the situation before officials set the round off. The explosion left a crater 4-feet deep and 5-feet wide.


Also found at the home was a 50-caliber tracer round and a large amount of methamephetamine.


Officials arrested two Inland Empire gang members Benjamin Wilson, 32, and Jerry Mills, 44, parolees of Apple Valley at the home. Bruce and Melanie Creech, both of Apple Valley, were booked for possession of a destructive device and possession of methamephetamine for sale.


Investigators learned someone at the home had trespassed onto a local military installation, found the round and brought it home as a souvenir, Wiltshire said.


"It doesn't appear the person had any idea how dangerous it was," Wiltshire said.


Hesperia SMASH Team officials ended up at the Washoan Road home after they arrested Tabitha Taylor, 39, of Apple Valley, a parolee at large with a stolen vehicle, in the 15700 block of Little Beaver Road in Victorville, sheriff's officials said.


Through an investigation, officials learned there may have been drugs at the home Taylor was staying at the night before on Washoan Road.


Taylor was arrested for outstanding warrants, being a parolee at large and armed and dangerous. Mills and Wilson were booked for parole violations.


Beatriz E. Valenzuela may be reached at 951-6276 or at BValenzuela@VVDailyPress.com.