San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department

Press Release

DATE/TIME: Friday, November 2, 2016 / 1:35 a.m.

INCIDENT: THC Extraction Lab – Explosion & Fire

LOCATION: 2494 N Duffy Street, San Bernardino

SUSPECT: #1) Edgar Jaciel Monarrez, age 24, of San Bernardino
#2) unidentified adult male


Officers from the San Bernardino Police Department were dispatched to a house on 2494 N Duffy Street in San Bernardino to investigate a report of an explosion and fire. Officers arrived at the location and found there was a structure to the rear of the residence that was heavily damaged from a fire. Personnel from the San Bernardino County Fire District were already extinguishing the fire. The interior of the structure had extreme damage from the explosion and fire. The main residence was intact and no damage was reported. Officers located items that were consistent with a THC extraction lab. Personnel from the Sheriff’s Department Gangs/Narcotics Division were requested to respond to assist with the investigation.

The Sheriff’s Marijuana Enforcement Team and Arson/Bomb Detail served a search warrant at the house and found evidence of a THC extraction operation occurring. Both suspects were inside the structure when the explosion and fire occurred. Both received major burns on their bodies and were transported to a local hospital for treatment. Monarrez’ family was in the front house at the time of the explosion and were not harmed.

Investigators believe the suspects were manufacturing and making concentrated cannabis, referred to as Wax or Honey Oil when the initial explosion occurred. The intense heat from the flames quickly engulfed the interior of the small structure where the suspects were. Family members reported seeing the two men running from the structure with their clothing on fire. Both suspects were in surgery at the time of this Press Release.

Concentrated cannabis can sell for much more than marijuana itself. Some marijuana users prefer using Wax, Dabs or Honey Oil over the straightforward method of smoking marijuana (bud) because of the higher concentration of THC levels produced. Therefore, the effects are much stronger than the traditional method of smoking the plant material. THC or Tetrahydrocannabinol is the main or active ingredient in marijuana that causes the “high” when using the drug.

The THC extraction process is extremely dangerous and has a high potential for explosion and fire due to the use of large amounts of flammable chemicals during the extraction process. This chemical process is illegal and is a violation of California’s Health & Safety Code. Wax is a form of concentrated cannabis commonly made by extracting the THC from the marijuana plant or plant material.

The investigation is ongoing and will be sent to the San Bernardino County District Attorney’s Office for review of charges against both suspects. They will face charges of Manufacturing a Controlled Substance and Arson; Causing Great Bodily Injury.

Anyone with information regarding this investigation is urged to contact the Sheriff’s Gangs / Narcotics Division at (909) 890-4840. Callers wishing to remain anonymous are urged to call the We-tip Hotline at 1-800-78-CRIME (27463) or you may leave information on the We-Tip Hotline

Photos available at:


Refer: Sheriff’s Public Affairs
Phone No. (909) 387-3700
DR / case: #621600680

John McMahon, Sheriff-Coroner

San Bernardino County Sheriff-Coroner Department

Sheriff’s Public Affairs Division

655 E. Third Street

San Bernardino, California 92415-0061

Telephone: (909) 387-3700