Menifee Police have arrested a 17-year-old student from Heritage High School after he said he sent threatening messages to other students and found him with what is believed to be a ‘ghost gun’.
The student was arrested early Saturday as he was returning home, police said in a statement. When they searched the teenager, officers found a pair of brass knuckles and the gun on him.
Police attended the student’s home after receiving a call earlier in the morning about the threatening messages he allegedly sent via social media.
The posts did not specifically target Heritage High or other students, but were apparently threatening enough that others who saw them on social media called the police.
The student has not been publicly identified. Police said he did not appear to have a criminal record. He was booked at Riverside County Juvenile Hall.
He has not yet been charged, but could face charges of criminal threats and possession of brass knuckles and an unregistered weapon.
Capt. Dave Gutierrez said the handgun did not have a serial number that would make it traceable to police, earning the guns the nickname “ghost guns”.
The gun appeared to have been built from a kit. These kits are available online and allow anyone to build a firearm from separately purchased parts.
California law enforcement officials are increasingly concerned that guns constructed in this manner are showing up more frequently at crime scenes and in the hands of people who shouldn’t have them.
It’s unclear how the 17-year-old got the gun.
“At this point, we don’t know whether or not he purchased the materials (to assemble the weapon) or not,” Gutierrez said.
There was no information on Sunday when the student would appear in court.