Police report thwarting mass shooting at California hotel

National and World

High-powered rifles and tactical gear were found in the suspect's house, police say

LONG BEACH, California (CNN) – Investigators released details of an alleged plot to carry out a mass shooting at a Long Beach, California hotel.

It’s the latest in more than two dozen similar suspected plots averted just this month.

High-powered rifles, hundreds of rounds of ammunition, 38 illegal high-capacity magazines and tactical gear were all found at Rodolfo Montoya’s home, police say.

“Suspect Montoya had clear plans, intent and the means to carry out an act of violence that may have resulted in a mass-casualty incident,” said Long Beach Chief Robert Luna.

The 37-year-old was a cook at this Marriott Hotel near the airport in Long Beach, California.

“He was upset about some recent workplace activity having to do with HR,” Luna said.

Luna said the suspect confided in a colleague with his plan.

“He was going to shoot up fellow employees and people coming into the hotel, so he had a plan of shooting everybody that he saw in the hotel,” he said.

That colleague reported Montoya’s alleged threat to hotel management Monday night.

Police were called.

Police arrested Montoya at his home in nearby Huntington Beach within 24 hours.

“Because this was reported, I firmly believe many lives were saved,” Luna said.

More than two dozen people have been arrested across the country for allegedly plotting or threatening mass casualty attacks since that spate of shootings in early-August that killed 34 at a garlic festival in California, in Dayton and in El Paso, Texas.

Security sources tell CNN that FBI Director Chris Wray has ordered field offices to conduct new threat assessments to stifle future attacks.

This alleged Long Beach plotter, currently held on $500,000 bond, had no previous criminal history that would have raised a flag on a background check.

“We are certainly living in dangerous times, I think, in our country and our community. And incidents where folks who should not have access to weapons and to, certainly, illegal weapons are facing our departments and our police departments across the country,” said Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia.

Montoya said just two words in court: “Yes” to confirm his name, and “Yes” to confirm his date of birth.

A preliminary hearing is set for two weeks from now.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Trending on WKBN.com