A Yonkers arsenal found Thursday by authorities contained a large supply of weapons and ammunition, as well as maps with handwritten circles marking some New York City locations. Jonathan Dienst has the story.
A Yonkers arsenal found Thursday by authorities contained a large supply of weapons and ammunition, as well as maps with handwritten circles marking some New York City locations.
The NYPD, FBI and Yonkers Police are now actively looking to see if Antonio Olmeda, the alleged owner of the weapons stash, might have been making a list of possible targets for a mass shooting. Olmeda is already in jail on charges of trying to shoot two NYPD officers in Queens in December. But police did not learn of the hidden cache of weapons until Thursday.
Investigators said there is no new threat because Olmeda has been behind bars since December. But they do want to know what those maps might mean, especially given recent mass shootings that have taken place in Colorado, Wisconsin and outside the Empire State Building.
Officials said the maps had red circles around certain NYPD police precincts as well as the Brooklyn Bridge and at least one tunnel. Investigators are not calling this terror related but they did voice concern about a suspect who had 15 handguns, numerous shotguns and AR-15 rifles along with 5,000 rounds of ammunition allegedly hidden in the basement of the Alder Street building.
Part of the Yonkers street was evacuated over concerns that there might be explosives stored in the building. None were found after an overnight search.
In December, when police stopped to question Olmeda in Queens as he walked wearing a fake beard. Police said he pulled out a gun and fired at the officers and then fled on foot. He was caught a few days later.
Thursday, Olmeda’s landlord went to the storage locker to clean it out, since he had not been paid rent for its use since December. He then discovered the weapons.
Olmeda’s attorney declined to comment on the Yonker’s search or his clients past crimes.
Police said the search also turned up smoke grenades, fake NYPD badges and a bulletproof vest.
Olmeda's lengthy criminal history includes a 1995 arrest for building pipe bombs and carrying a flame thrower. He was arrested in 2001 carrying guns and ammunition near Fort Bragg soon after Sept. 11, 2001.
He pleaded guilty and served 18 months in that offense, but denied he was plotting an attack.
One source said police believe Olmeda has some mental issues.