SAN JOSE, Calif. – Police seized an arsenal of guns and ammunition from a Northern California man who was accused of cyberbullying his former coworkers after being fired, it announced Tuesday. Went.
Brian Velasquez, 43, of Morgan Hill, was charged with a felony last week and was released on $50,000 bail. Officials said he could face more charges related to illegal weapons.
“There is a person who has enmity, hatred, anger towards others and who was averted. Police Chief Anthony Mata said, “I believe a mass shooting was averted.”
It was not immediately clear whether Velasquez had an attorney who could speak on his behalf. When contacted by KNTV-TV on Tuesday, he declined to comment.
Velasquez was fired from a construction company in January. In April, the company called police to say it had “engaged in stalking behaviour,” a police statement said.
The behavior escalated, police said, and included posting online photos of themselves pointing guns and sending threatening, abusive emails to their former supervisors and coworkers.
Some of the emails suggested that he was looking into the alleged victims and gave details about their homes and family members.
A recent email that was sent were statements like, “I know where you live, I see you installed a pool, I know what your wife is driving,” Santa Clara Marissa McCain, a supervising attorney with the county’s crime strategy unit, told the Bay Area Newsgroup.
Police learned that Velasquez had multiple registered firearms and, working with the DA’s office, received an arrest warrant and a gun-violence restraining order on felony charges. It allowed officers to confiscate his weapons pending a June 6 hearing to determine whether he was fit to keep them. Police said both the orders were given at his house on May 19.
According to police photos, investigators have seized at least five rifles and four handguns. Officials said the weapons included two assault-style rifles, and several guns had illegal modifications, including rear pistol grips and detachable magazines.
Materials for making and assembling “high-capacity magazines, hundreds of rounds of ammunition, tactical body armor and ghost guns were also seized,” the police statement said.
The announcement came days before the first anniversary of the shooting at the San Jose Rail Yard in which 10 people, including the gunman, were killed.
Sam Cassidy, 57, a disgruntled employee of the Valley Transportation Authority Light Rail Yard, killed coworkers and then himself in the May 26 attack. It was the deadliest mass shooting in the history of the San Francisco Bay Area.