Police responded to alleged threats made by a student of a potential school shooting, only to find a collection of ghost guns and destructive devices at his home.
The San Diego high school student and his father were both arrested following the alleged verbal threats of a shooting heard by students at Rancho Bernardo High School.
The teen was allegedly showing “concerning videos and making threatening statements” against others and the school, according to a letter to the families of those who attend the high school from principal Hans Becker, obtained by NBC San Diego.
The San Diego Police Department subsequently responded to investigate reports they received of a student “making verbal threats of a school shooting”, the police department said in a statement on Tuesday.
“This is a situation where everything went right. The students saw some videos, they heard some statements that were really concerning, and I think by what was found in the search warrant, those fears were valid,” said Christine Paik, Poway Unified School District chief communications officer, to ABC 10News.
The police filed a gun violence restraining order for the juvenile, which can stop someone from having, owning, or buying any firearms (guns), firearm parts, ammunition, or magazines, according to California law.
At the house, authorities found several unserialised firearms, commonly referred to as ghost guns, other assault weapons and several destructive devices, the police department said.
The San Diego Metro Arson Strike Team assisted in retrieving and seizing all the destructive devices.
The collection of weapons included “handguns, to shotguns, to grenade launchers and grenades”, described San Diego Police Chief David Nisleit to Fox 5.
After a preliminary investigation, the teen student, who has not been identified, was taken into custody and later booked into juvenile hall.
His father, Neal Anders, 45, has also been arrested on charges of possession of illegal firearms, manufacturing assault weapons and possession of a destructive device, the police statement said.
He is being held on a $300,000 bond and is set to appear in San Diego Court downtown on Thursday, according to jail records.
Making sure there were no explosives at the school, authorities did a sweep of the high school campus, NBC San Diego reported.
In Mr Becker’s letter, obtained by the outlet, he said that he wanted to “commend the students who acted responsibly by reporting what they heard”.
He added that the San Diego Police Department will be on campus next week to follow up on an investigation and to provide a “reassuring presence” and reiterated that Rancho Bernardo High School remains a safe place for both students and staff.
The Independent has contacted Poway Unified School District, Rancho Bernardo High School and the San Diego Police Department for comment.