Norwalk Sheriff's Station deputies investigated further and learned that the 17-year-old male student had an extensive history of discipline.
After obtaining a warrant to search the student's home in Norwalk, deputies found two AR-15 rifles, two handguns and 90 high-capacity ammunition magazines, McDonnell said.
Since the Florida school shooting on February 14, there have been 19 school-related threats in L.A. County that have been reported to the department's Criminal Intelligence Bureau, according to McDonnell.
The student, whose name will not be released due to his young age, was charged with making criminal threats. The student's older brother, an Army veteran Daniel Eriberto Barcenas, claimed ownership of the weapons, McDonnell said.
One AR-15 was registered to the older brother and the other was not registered, officials said. Deputies were called, and an investigation resulted in finding a collection of weapons and ballistic evidence at the student's home, Los Angeles County Sheriff Jim McDonnell said at a Wednesday news conference. He added that the school has received an influx of threats in 2018 compared to 2017, a troubling rise that has confounded him and anxious his colleagues.
A national organisation that tracks school threats said it has recorded around 50 a day on average since the Florida shooting, compared with about 10 a day on average. "This has not been the case".
Chavez said it was after lunch break and students were returning to class when he heard the threat about a school shooting within the next three weeks.
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"We take all the threats we receive seriously", Sheriff McDonnell said. He later added that the guns found in this case were "readily available" and not locked away.
School threats on the rise nationwide since the Florida shooting include dozens on social media, about 10 incidents where a gun was brought to school and 22 bomb threats, said Amy Klinger, director of programs for the Ohio-based Educators School Safety Network.
"All the indications were that he was moving in that direction", McDonnell said.
"We want to encourage you and your children to report any observed suspicious behavior to law enforcement or school officials, as appropriate. Your students will be safe and protected at school".
The teen confirmed the comments and the Los Angeles County Sheriff's department took action.
Robert Jacobsen, general counsel for the Norwalk-La Mirada Unified School District, said the teen didn't like a teacher's rule banning headphones in class but that school officials didn't have any other information about concerns regarding the student.
"He did say that he was just kidding, he did not mean it". The student continued making threats, telling the Chavez that he would carry out the shooting in three weeks, according to Jacobsen. "I'm just doing my job every day...the sheriff's department can only respond if they are told".
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