A mass shooting may have been averted in California after police arrested a highly armed man who had intentions of “wiping out” Black, Hispanic and Jewish populations.
CNN’s Cheri Mossburg reported that “a California man is in custody after police found a cache of weapons, ammunition and racist writings in his vehicle.”
“Wesley Charles Martines, 32, was stopped by Campbell Police officers on July 9, after a local business owner alerted police shortly after midnight that someone was prowling in the area, peering into vehicles and a storage shed,” Mossburg reported.
According to the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office, when officers arrived at the scene and began investigating, they found numerous assault-style rifles, a handgun, body armor and ammunition in the truck belonging to Martines, along with what appeared to be an inactive pipe bomb.
Authorities also reported seizing a hate-filled journal that contained a number of racist and anti-Semitic writings. The materials included described Martines’ plan to “go to a sporting goods store, dress up as an employee and tie everybody up.”
In an interview with CNN, Campbell Police Capt. Ian White said it looked as if Martines intended to target a local business, adding that investigators were still trying to figure out the motive.
“We definitely feel a crisis was averted,” White said. “There was a significant threat to the public.”
In a disturbing detail from the DA’s office, police have also revealed that some of the bullets found in Martines’ vehicle were inscribed with messages, including “To a widow from the Grim Reaper,” “Cop Killer,” and “A Good Start.”
White told CNN that Martines was calm and cooperative during his arrest and didn’t resist police officers.
“He tried to rationalize everything, insisting there was no ill-intent,” White said.
Santa Clara County District Attorney Jeff Rosen praised local police for their swift action, saying, “once again, law enforcement saved lives before the blood and tears flowed. All of us have a role in stopping the next mass shooting, suicide or domestic violence murder. Please call law enforcement if you know that someone is armed and dangerous.”
Following his arrest, Mossburg reported that Martines was arraigned and charged with possession of assault weapons, multiple silencers, drugs producing a pipe bomb, and is currently being held on $300,000 bail.