Crime

Los Banos High student arrested, accused of threats on social media, police say

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A 14-year-old Los Banos High student who allegedly posted threatening messages on social media, referencing mass shootings, was taken into police custody, according to the Los Banos Unified School District.

Los Banos police were alerted Thursday evening to either the Instagram or YouTube page where the student authored three possibly threatening posts, Cmdr. Ray Reyna said.

Investigators reported finding three comments referencing “mass shootings,” “mass shooter” and “firearms,” Reyna said.

The student was identified and police executed a search warrant at his Los Banos home, Reyna said. No dangerous weapons were found at the residence.

“We don’t believe any of the students were at all in danger today,” Reyna said.

The student was taken into custody and is expected to be booked into Merced Juvenile Hall on suspicion of felony online criminal threats, Reyna said.

School officials were notified of the threatening social media posts Friday morning from a tip, according to a news release.

The student wasn’t at school Friday, according to the release. All Los Banos schools were open on regular schedules.

Vikaas Shanker is an award-winning reporter covering education, crime and courts for the Merced Sun-Star and Los Banos Enterprise. After growing up in Naperville, Illinois and graduating from the University of Kansas, he reported in several Chicago suburbs before moving to Merced County in 2016.
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