A California man was accused of threatening a mass shooting at a county fair, simply because his parents wanted him to go with them and he didn’t want to go, Los Angeles’ KNBC-TV reports.
Police say that Erik Villasenor, 22, of Sylmar, wasn’t at all interested in going to the L.A. County Fair in Pomona with his parents last weekend. Rather than simply say, “thanks but no thanks,” Villasenor instead allegedly emailed the fair’s management on Friday afternoon.
“Hello, I was told that someone was planning on doing a mass shooting on Sunday at the Fairgrounds. I just wanted to inform you guys already.”
To be fair, Villasenor never threatened that he, specifically, was going to do the shooting, just that he had heard there was going to be one and that the fair managers should be aware.
Pomona Police Chief Mike Olivieri said that Villasenor’s goal was to “spark some chaos and commotion” that would get media coverage, which would then compel his parents to skip it, and he could get out of having to go.
Olivieri also noted the juxtaposition of the man’s age and the fact that such shenanigans usually come from the minds of teenagers and children.
“Though he’s 22, he felt that it was appropriate to send this threat… Kind of a crazy thing, but that’s what we have learned,” he said.
Authorities were able to attach the email to Villasenor, although how that happened remains unclear, as of this writing. When police showed up at his home, he allegedly admitted to the hoax. He was taken downtown and charged with making false threats, and his bail was set at $20,000. Whether or not he made bail is unclear.
Meanwhile, the L.A. County Fair continued on, without a hitch, although police did say that they beefed up security at the fair out of an abundance of caution.
The entire nation is, of course, on-edge about mass shootings in the wake of several such incidents in the past few months. And indeed, an agricultural fair in California was the site of just such a shooting.
As reported at the time by The Inquisitr, on July 28 a mass shooting took place at the Garlic Festival in Gilroy, California. The alleged gunman, Santino William Legan, killed three people and himself, and wounded 17 others. Authorities say that Legan had complained about “hordes of mestizos” before the shooting, and had promoted literature related to the white supremacist movement.