Earlier this month, a 17-year-old high school student from Menifee, California, was arrested. The unnamed male student allegedly threatened a school shooting on social media, but did not name any particular school. The student himself attended Heritage High School in Menifee. When police served a search warrant on the student’s home, they found him to be in possession of brass knuckles and a ghost gun.
Ghost guns are unregistered firearms that can be assembled in two ways. Typically, the guns are assembled through parts which can be obtained through the mail. Since gun parts aren’t classified as firearms, dealers don’t have to perform background checks on their customers and there are no serial numbers. Ghost gun parts can also be manufactured using 3D printers at home. 3D-printed parts use a plastic polymer and aren’t as reliable as traditionally manufactured gun parts, but can still do plenty of damage in the wrong hands. In the reports that I’ve read, it wasn’t made clear which type of ghost gun was seized in this search.
The suspect was being held in juvenile custody for charges of making criminal threats, possession of brass knuckles and possession of an unregistered firearm. Ghost guns are illegal in California, but you’d be surprised how many states they’re legal in.
And speaking of California and ghost guns, this is far from the first time a ghost gun has ended up in the hands of a would-be school shooter, or a ‘successful’ school shooter. In late 2019, a 16-year-old suspect used a .45 semiautomatic pistol ghost gun during a school shooting at Saugus High School in Santa Clarita, California. Two students died that day before the suspect took his own life. Last month, a 16-year-old student of Berkeley High School in Berkeley, California, was arrested for allegedly plotting an attack against the school. It was alleged that he was in possession of the parts of a semi-automatic rifle, and had electronic items that could be used to create additional weapons.
Ghost guns have also turned up in school shooting plots of other states also.
I can’t even tell parents to keep an eye on their kids’ activities because in too many cases, it was a parent who was making ghost guns in the home.
That is only a small aspect of how deeply rooted the cult of the gun has infected American society.