EC student served restraining order after allegedly making death threats


An EC student told a Veterans Center employee Sept. 30 he would stage a “massacre” on the Library Lawn, planning to kill a teacher, administrators, parents, and children. The student who is said to be “actively psychotic” was served with a temporary restraining order Oct. 3. Photo credit: John Fordiani

Updated: Nov. 25, 1:05 p.m. This story has been edited for clarity.

Updated: Oct. 21, 5:10 p.m.

Updated: Oct. 14, 11:30 p.m.

Updated: Oct. 11, 10 a.m.

Updated: Oct. 10, 11:45 a.m.

Members of the EC community were subject to death threats made last week, prompting a temporary restraining order (TRO) to be granted for a male student to stay at least 100 yards away from campus, according to the TRO.

Around 10:45 a.m. Sept. 30, the 35-year-old Hawthorne resident allegedly told an employee at the Veterans Center he had “been told that (he) need(s) to kill the parents of these children walking on campus,” according to the TRO.

He told the same employee that he “will kill” administrators and a teacher. He named Vice President of Academic Affairs Francisco Arce as a person he would kill, according to the TRO.

According to the police report included in the TRO, the man told the Veterans Center employee that “he was going to kill the Administrators of El Camino College, and named Dr Arce as one of them; he was going to create a massacre at the schools library lawn like the Santa Barbara shooting; and he was going to kill the parents of the children walking around on the campus, tie them up to pole’s or a wall and rip them to pieces (sic).”

In May of this year, a Santa Barbara City College student went on a “rampage” near the University of California, Santa Barbara, killing three people at his apartment and three more on the streets of nearby Isla Vista before killing himself, according to the Huffington Post.

The EC student has been described as “actively psychotic” and his threat was “credible,” according to the TRO granted Oct. 3. On Oct. 7, EC Police Chief Michael Trevis said those in the community hadn’t been alerted because there was no credible threat.

According to the TRO, the man told the Veterans Center employee, “I need to come in and shoot everbody and then maybe someone will change the things that are happening (sic).”

He has been ordered to stay at least 100 yards away from Arce, his workplace, home, and vehicle. Trevis said the department is looking to file charges against the man for threatening a school official.

The man “threatened to kill administrators and massacre students at El Camino Community College. He threatened to murder parents and children on campus,” according to the TRO.

The Union has requested documents regarding the student. Ann Garten, director of community relations, said she and Trevis will look over the requests with the college’s attorney.

The man attended at least one evening class Sept. 30 after he made the threats.

At 3:30 p.m. Oct. 1, Trevis contacted an ECPD officer about the statements the man made at the Veterans Center, according to the TRO. The man was taken into custody at a residence and he was taken to a local hospital for a 72-hour hold.

“We reacted quickly,” Trevis said. “We didn’t find the means for him to carry anything out. No one was in immediate threat or jeopardy.”

According to the TRO, Arce was made aware of the threats Oct. 2. The TRO is in effect until a hearing takes place later this month.

Editor’s note: An earlier version of this story said Trevis contacted an ECPD officer at 2:30 p.m. Oct. 1. It’s been changed to its correct time – 3:30 p.m. According to the TRO, the student is James Lemus.