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California high school security officer pleads guilty to making explosives with student, selling them on Instagram

A campus security supervisor at a California high school who was arrested in June and charged with making and selling explosives on social media pleaded guilty on Monday, the U.S. Attorney’s Office announced.

Angelo Jackson Mendiver, 27, used an Instagram account to sell the explosives, then sent them in the mail to residents of other states, according to court documents. He worked closely with a male juvenile high school student in the city of Arvin, about 100 miles north of Los Angeles.

Mendiver, who worked at Arvin High School, plead guilty to “conspiring to engage in manufacturing and dealing in explosive materials,” “mailing explosive devices” and “making false statements to FBI agents,” U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert said in a press release Monday.

Arvin High School in Arvin, Calif.Google Maps

Representatives of Arvin High School redirected inquiries about the case to the Kern High School District’s press office, which could not be reached for comment.

At his sentencing on April 1 next year, Mendiver faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,00 fine for each count, said the Eastern District of California Attorney’s Office.

FBI agents seized approximately 500 pounds of explosives from Mendiver’s residence on June 1, and another 500 pounds of explosives from the juvenile’s residence. The U.S. Attorney’s Office said items used to make the explosives were also found in both homes.

Police recovered photos and videos that Mendiver sent on Instagram to the juvenile showing homemade explosives he created using titanium salute. The U.S. Attorney’s Office said Mendiver wrote “homemade kills all consumer” in the messages.

According to a court indictment from June, Mendiver was also accused on counts of conspiracy to commit offenses against the United States, improper storage of explosives and criminal forfeiture in addition to the charges he pled guilty to.

Mendiver’s court-assigned attorney could not be reached for comment. Assistant U.S. Attorney Karen A. Escobar is prosecuting the case.

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