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Arrest Made After Improvised Chemical Weapon Found In South Coast Walmart


It was called a suspicious device when it was found in the aisle of a South Coast Walmart a month ago, and investigators now say it was a chemical weapon created with instructions found on the internet.   Now, there's been an arrest in the case.

Oxnard Police, and firefighters didn’t know exactly what it was when they responded to the store on the 2700 block of Saviers Road June 18th. It had a bowl with some bubbling chemicals. It was safely removed from the store, and no one was hurt.

Oxnard Police Assistant Chief Eric Sonstegard says a more that month long investigation answered the question of who was behind the attempted attack, leading to an arrest this week. Martin Reyes, who was already in the Ventura County Jail on an unrelated charge, was arrested for the unlawful possession and manufacturing of a chemical weapon of mass destruction.

Sonstegard says while being questioned, Reyes admitted making the device, but they still aren’t sure why he did. Investigators say one of the most concerning things about the incident to police is the face the 32 year old Oxnard man apparently got information off the internet, and then found what he needed for the device in the aisles of the superstore, making it on the spot.

Walmart’s own global security team was also involved in the investigation, so it could take steps to try prevent future incidents of this type. Store officials told police that the six hour shutdown caused a more than $120,000 loss in revenue