Two arrests after threats to Southern California schools

Arrest (FILE)
Posted at 1:15 PM, Jun 01, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-01 17:33:27-04

BALDWIN PARK, Calif. (AP) — UPDATE (2:31 PM) : A 44-year-old Oklahoma man was in custody Wednesday on suspicion of phoning in bomb threats to five Los Angeles schools, while separate threats against a Southern California high school led to the arrest of a student, authorities said.

Marcus James Buchanan, who lives in Oklahoma but grew up in Los Angeles, is charged in a federal criminal complaint alleging he threatened to bomb five Los Angeles campuses and shoot children as they exited one of the elementary schools, the U.S. Attorney's Office said in a statement.

It wasn't immediately known if Buchanan has an attorney and contact information for the Blackwell, Oklahoma resident could not be found.

In February and April, prosecutors say, Buchanan phoned in multiple threats that led to lockdowns at Los Angeles schools.

During one phone call, Buchanan allegedly told an employee: "There is a bomb at your school and we will shoot the kids when they get out of the school. That is what you get for not accepting me in ’86," according to an affidavit.

Phone records indicated that the threatening calls came from a number identified with Buchanan, the affidavit states.

Threats against a Southern California high school led to the arrest of a student, authorities said.

The investigation began May 25 when staff at Sierra Vista High School in Baldwin Park received an email threat involving explosive devices on campus after classes had ended for the day, police said in a statement Tuesday.

A large police response including explosives-detection canine teams from many agencies did not find any devices on the campus 15 miles (24 kilometers) east of Los Angeles.

The school announced on its website that in addition to a police presence, staff would search students' backpacks and belongings through the last week of the current semester.

The police statement said that staff again received threats on Tuesday and detectives, with technical assistance from the FBI, identified the suspect, arrested him and seized evidence from his home.

The suspect was described only as a juvenile who attends the school.

“Detectives will seek criminal prosecution for these threats,” the police statement said.