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Police: Guns, explosives, and drugs found inside Henrico 'fortress'

Posted at 2:34 PM, Jul 20, 2022

HENRICO COUNTY, Va. — A Henrico man who lived in a home described as a “fortress” will stand trial for a variety of crimes following a raid of his Tuckahoe house.

At a preliminary hearing on Wednesday, four investigators testified to evidence they said was collected from 52-year-old Michael Hardy's Durwood Crescent home during a two-day search in March.

During the raid, law enforcement evacuated the neighborhood over concerns an explosive device could detonate.

Officers described what they characterized as “booby traps” on the property, an elaborate surveillance system, and “workspaces” for manufacturing drugs.

Hardy’s defense attorney, Russell Stone, at times questioned the investigators regarding where items were located, if specific pieces of evidence were thoroughly tested and deemed explosives, and who else lived in the home.

Stone persuaded the judge and prosecutor to drop a charge for maintaining a fortified drug house, but ultimately more than a dozen counts are now set for trial on October 25 and 26.

The current charges include multiple counts of possessing explosive materials, explosive devices, firearms, and possession with intent to distribute crack cocaine. The judge found Hardy guilty of six misdemeanor counts of possession of fireworks and fined him $100 for each.

A Henrico County Police Officer testified that he spoke to Hardy after his initial arrest.

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Durwood Crescent in Henrico County

He said Hardy told him he got into the drug trade because he believed his daughter was in harm’s way in Texas due to drug cartels.

The officer alleged Hardy confessed to becoming addicted to drugs after he began selling them.

During the conversation, according to the officer, Hardy told him nothing in the house would hurt law enforcement, that it “wasn’t for us.”

Officers described locating a heavy safe filled with drugs, improvised explosive devices, and Molotov cocktails in various states of construction.

An investigator estimated that 14 firearms were recovered from the home and a trailer located in the driveway.

Hardy’s attorney noted Hardy does have military experience and there are lawful uses for some of the materials found on the property.

At Wednesday’s preliminary hearing prosecutors declined to move forward on two charges of possessing drugs (Xanax and Fentanyl) with the intent to distribute.

Hardy remains in custody while awaiting trial.

This is a developing story, so anyone with more information can email newstips@wtvr.com to send a tip.

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