Venice man gets 9 years for possessing pipe bombs, grenades, guns

Sarasota County Sheriff's Office

VENICE, Fla. (AP) – A Venice man has been sentenced to more than nine years in prison for possessing two pipe bombs, two hand grenades and other weapons.

Federal court records show 25-year-old Steven Pace was sentenced Thursday. He pleaded guilty in January to possessing four destructive devices and for knowingly possessing firearms in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.

Pace and his girlfriend, Katie Smith, were arrested in February 2016 following a Florida Department of Children and Families welfare check for a then-5-year-old child living in their Venice home.

Besides the pipe bombs and grenades, Sarasota County deputies reported finding eight rifles, five handguns, several boxes of ammunition and synthetic drugs.

Smith previously pleaded guilty to possessing destructive devices and was sentenced to 18 months in prison.

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