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A 23-year-old Utah student allegedly threatened to commit a mass shooting at his university using a 3-D-printed gun

Published by Business Insider on Thu, 30 Aug 2018


Austin James David West, 23, was arrested after allegedly making threats to commit a mass shooting at Broadview University, police say.Hewas charged on August 9 with a misdemeanor of making a threat of violence.He was arrested a day earlier after talking with a fellow student at Broadview University "about using a gun to shoot students."West also sent texts on August 7 to another student saying he would commit a shooting that "people would be talking about," according to a search warrant unsealed in court on Tuesday.A 23-year-old man from Utah was arrested after threatening to use a 3-D-printed gun to commit a mass shooting at a small Salt Lake City university, police say.Austin James David West, of South Jordan, was charged August 9 with a misdemeanor of making a threat of violence.He was arrested a day earlier after talking with a fellow student at Broadview University "about using a gun to shoot students," a police report seen by Deseret News said.West also sent texts on August 7 to another student saying he would commit a shooting that "people would be talking about," according to a search warrant unsealed in court on Tuesday."The text messages sent by the suspect reference killing people with a 3-D-printed gun so the gun could not be traced back to him," the warrant stated.It continued: "The message contained images of what appears to be a male in a video holding a rifle while standing over another male that is lying on the ground."His statements were reported to the university, prompting the dean to email faculty and students warning them of the threat.The student who received the messages told police that West "has a fascination with firearms and violence."(He) described Austin as being quite interested in serial killers, school shooters and other mass casualty type events. He described Austin as liking up close and personal violence such as wounds caused by a knife," according to the affidavit. "(He) believed Austin could be capable of committing a mass casualty type event such as a school shooting."A gun expert told KUTV that 3-D-printed guns are not yet advanced enough to carry out mass shootings.Clark Aposhian, a chairman for the Utah Shooting Sports Council and a gun expert, said: "It's like holding a firecracker in your hand; it's going to hurt."He also said a gunman would likely get one or two shots out of a 3-D-printed gun before it started to break down.News of West's arrest comes after a Seattle judge approved a motion to block Texas-based Defense Distributed founder Cody Wilson from releasing the blueprints to 3-D-printed guns online.Nineteen states and Washington, DC, had sought an injection to stop the release of the blueprints.The states argued that online access to the undetectable guns would pose as a security risk.Meanwhile, Wilson said on Tuesday that he had started selling the blueprints online regardless of the court order.Join the conversation about this storyNOW WATCH: Cigna's CEO says that the problem with healthcare in America has nothing to do with employers
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