Man with assault rifles, handgun breaks into elementary school in Ridgecrest, now in custody

Posted at 9:51 AM, Jan 05, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-05 20:25:38-05

A man is in custody after he broke into a Ridgecrest elementary school, while in possession of a small arsenal.

According to the Ridgecrest Police Department, 30-year-old Brian Coats broke into Pierce Elementary School Tuesday and took landscaping rocks, a small desk, a table and a trash can. Police say he used an ax to open the front gate. 

Police say Coats was in possession of a concealed pistol, an AK-47 assault rifle and a Bushmaster rifle in his vehicle. Police also found numerous large capacity magazines for the rifles. 

At one point Coats climbed on top of the school's library and was seen running in front of classrooms. 

Pierce Elementary issued a statement to parents saying early morning staff was notified about a man acting strange in front of the school. The statement went on to say Coats left the campus and that no children were ever in any danger.