A man who set off an “acid bomb” in a Marshalls store in Visalia has pleaded no contest to one count of using an explosive device with the intent to harm people or property, the Tulare County District Attorney’s Office said Monday.
Larry Mock, 40, of Tulare, pleaded no contest Friday and will be sentenced next month to 9 years and 8 months in prison, the District Attorney’s Office said.
The no contest plea covers the special allegation of using a deadly weapon and having a prior felony conviction. Mock also pleaded no contest to possessing a destructive device, evading a police officer with willful disregard, and vandalism over $400, all felonies.
On Jan. 27, Mock entered the Marshalls store and detonated a hydrochloric acid explosive device, authorities said.
At the time, Visalia police said a man was seen running from the store carrying stolen merchandise and speculated that the explosion was a diversion.
The next day, Mock was pulled over for a traffic infraction by Visalia police. While the officer was contacting dispatch, Mock sped away and drove recklessly through traffic, causing police to call off the chase.
With help from residents in the area, officers found the vehicle, which Mock drove through an orchard and abandoned. Inside the vehicle, police found two acid bombs, bomb-making materials and a purse stolen from the store.
A day later, police tracked Mock to a motel in Tulare and arrested him without incident.