ANGEL ZAPATA

ANGEL ZAPATA

An 18-year-old Vista High School student who was arrested last week for bringing a handgun onto campus is still facing a felony charge related to the incident.

According to Yuma Justice Court records, Angel Zapata was charged Monday with one felony count of possession of a stolen weapon and was ordered held on a $10,000 bond, which he posted on Wednesday.

A preliminary hearing has been scheduled for 4 p.m. Friday.

Zapata was initially arrested on Feb. 19, and made his initial appearance in Yuma Justice Court that same day, at which time he was informed that he was being held on two charges of misconduct with weapons and one count of possession of a stolen weapon.

Two days later, on Feb. 21, Zapata was told during his arraignment that no criminal complaint had been filed against him in the matter and the $50,000 cash-only bond against him was lifted.

The reason no charges were filed against Zapata, according to court records, was that the case was being referred to the city prosecutor for consideration of misdemeanor charges.

However, during that timeframe on Feb. 20, prosecutors from the Yuma County Attorney’s Office filed a new case against Zapata for possession of a stolen weapon, which is what he was charged with on Monday. 

Additional charges were brought against Zapata over the weekend in a third case, but no criminal complaint was filed against him during an arraignment on Tuesday. He remained in custody the entire time.

According to Yuma police, officers were dispatched to the school, located at 3150 S. Avenue A, Building C, at approximately 10:47 a.m. on Feb. 19.

Yuma Union High School District spokesperson Eric Patten previously stated that Zapata had been called into the administration office on that morning to address an unrelated incident.

When an administrator searched his belongings, a gun was found in his backpack and police were notified.

Zapata was initially detained and transported to the police station for questioning, but later arrested and booked into the Yuma County jail.

Patten added that the student posed no threat to the school, and the student’s parent was present at the time of the search.

Yuma police, upon questioning Zapata, determined that he did not intend to bring the gun on campus and there was no danger to the school.

A records check of the gun’s serial number later revealed that it had been reported stolen out of Yuma County.

Patten also stated that the reason parents were not notified of the incident is that the school district does not release information about the disciplinary actions of students.

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