California High School Security Guard Pleads Guilty to Using Student to Help Sell Explosives

California High School Security Guard Pleads Guilty to Using Student to Help Sell Explosives

Katella High School in Anaheim, Calif., on Dec. 7, 2023. (John Fredricks/The Epoch Times)

Micaela Ricaforte

Micaela Ricaforte

12/12/2023

Updated: 12/30/2023

A former California high school security officer who used a high school student to sell and transfer explosives pleaded guilty Dec. 11 to several counts of manufacturing, dealing, and mailing explosives, according to the U.S. attorney’s office.
According to court documents, Angelo Mendiver, 27, who was a campus security supervisor at Arvin High School in Bakersfield, California, used an Instagram account to sell explosives and explosive materials and worked closely with an Arvin High School student to fulfill transactions and send explosives in the mail to residents of other states.
The FBI collaborated on the investigation with the Bakersfield Police Department.
In June, agents seized approximately 500 pounds of explosives and explosive materials in a search of Mr. Mendiver’s home, on a federal search warrant.
They seized another 500 pounds of explosives and explosive materials from the high school student’s home.
Agents also found other materials used to make explosives at both suspects’ homes.
Mr. Mendiver pleaded guilty to conspiring to engage in manufacturing and dealing in explosive materials and mailing explosive devices, as well as making false statements to FBI agents, the U.S. attorney’s office announced in a press release.
In one Instagram message to the student, Mr. Mendiver sent a photo of titanium salute—a pyrotechnic device designed to produce a loud bang and bright flash—and an explosive device, followed by two videos he took of homemade explosive devices that he had made, according to the press release.
“Homemade kills all consumer,” Mr. Mendiver told the student in one message.
Mr. Mendiver is scheduled for sentencing on April 1, 2024, and faces a maximum of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine for each count.
It’s unclear whether Mr. Mendiver still works for the high school. As of Dec. 12, he was not listed in the school’s staff directory on its website.
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Micaela Ricaforte

Micaela Ricaforte

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Micaela Ricaforte covers education in Southern California for The Epoch Times. In addition to writing, she is passionate about music, books, and coffee.

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