Texts stop possible mass shooting at casino

Photo credit: Sean Martens

Photo credit: Sean Martens

Josh Cozine

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A possible mass shooting at Gold Country Casino was halted before it started due to threatening text messages Tuesday.

According to a release from the Butte County Sheriff’s Office (BCSO), a call was received Tuesday from someone saying they were getting texts threatening a mass shooting and suicide at the Oroville casino.

“If there’s a threat, we take it seriously, no matter where it comes from,” said Miranda Bowersox, Community Relations Coordinator for BCSO.

Law enforcement determined a possible originator of the texts, Wade Burnside of Oroville. Yuba City Police passed along information that they had “learned that the reporting party had met the suspect at Gold Country Casino,” though no casino was named in the texts.

Burnside was on probation so a warrant was unneeded to search his residence where officers found a small amount of ammunition as well as 4.9 grams of methamphetamine and pipes.

Though he initially denied sending the texts, Burnside later admitted to it when officers presented him with the messages on his phone. According to Bowersox, he gave the officer’s permission to search the phone.

Burnside was arrested for terrorist threats, possession of methamphetamines and drug paraphernalia, possessing ammunition as a felon, and violation of probation.

Josh Cozine can be reached at [email protected] or @joshcozine on Twitter.

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