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Officials: Mobile home in Federal Heights set ablaze by man who admitted to putting bombs inside

Posted at 6:45 PM, Jan 17, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-18 07:47:39-05

FEDERAL HEIGHTS, Colo. – An Adams County bomb squad is investigating after a man claimed to have placed homemade explosives inside his mobile home in Federal Heights before setting it ablaze Wednesday afternoon, according to officials at the scene.

The fire was spotted at around 4:27 p.m. by AIRTRACKER7 near the area of Moselle and Tejon Streets, not too far from the Water World water park.

Plumes of white smoke could be seen for miles as firefighters from North Metro Fire and several neighboring agencies assisted in putting the fire out.

An official Denver7 reporter Liz Gelardi spoke with said the fire was set by a man who admitted to putting bombs in a home. That man, who has now been identified as 56-year-old Steven Richard Truetken, was arrested before making the admission. 

Truetken told police he had planned this event for some time and that he intentionally "introduced gasoline into and around the home of his neighbor, and ignited the gasoline knowing that at least one person was in the home," before setting it ablaze, according to a press release sent to Denver7.

The suspect told police he had run a hose from his water heater gas line into the home and planned to fill it with natural gas so he could destroy his home, but failed to activate the valve. 

The area around the mobile homes was evacuated. Those who were misplaced by the fire were staying at Resound Church up the street from Water World. The majority of the evacuated residents were allowed to return home late Wednesday.

No injuries have been reported from this fire.

A long history of crime

Court records obtained by Denver7 show Truetken has a long criminal history dating back to 1982. 

Records show Truetken has been charged with burglary, traffic violations including DUI, third-degree assault, carrying a concealed weapon, harassment, resisting arrest, obstructing a peace officer, among others.