Man threatened Laguna Hills High with death, bomb, mayhem at graduation, officials say

Laguna Hills, CA-Jan.  21, 2022-The entrance to Laguna Hills High School in Laguna Hills.  A student caused an uproar after shouting racial slurs at a black student during a basketball game with a rival school on Jan. 21, 2022. (Gustavo Arellano/Los Angeles Times)

Laguna Hills High School has been the target of a series of threats, according to law enforcement officials. (Gustavo Arellano/Los Angeles Times)

A 29-year-old man was arrested in northern California on Saturday after allegedly issuing a series of gunshot, death and bomb scares over the past six months at Laguna Hills High School, the California Sheriff’s Department said. Orange County.

Eugene Thomas Jenkins of San Rafael was incarcerated in Orange County Jail on suspicion of multiple criminal offenses including felony threats, false report of a bomb, false report of an emergency and threatening a public officer.

Threats against school staff and students began in December after a league soccer game, the department said in a news release.

Over the next several months, the school received three reports of a shooter approaching campus and a false bomb threat.

On at least one occasion, the school received a death threat over the phone.

Additionally, at least 10 death threats were mailed through the United States Postal Service, the sheriff’s department said. The ministry did not say where the letters were sent.

At least two of the threats were aimed at the Laguna Hills High School graduation ceremony on Thursday, the sheriff’s department said.

Additional security was placed during the graduation ceremony, which was held without incident.

In the days leading up to the ceremony, the Sheriff’s Department coordinated with law enforcement agencies across the state, including the FBI, San Rafael Police, Marin County Sheriff’s Office, the United States Postal Inspection Service and the Bay Area Transit Police to monitor locations used by the suspect.

Jenkins was tracked down and arrested in San Rafael.

The Orange County Sheriff’s Department declined to say how Jenkins was identified as a suspect and whether he was charged with threatening other locations.

He is scheduled to appear in Orange County court on Tuesday.

This story originally appeared in the Los Angeles Times.

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