Man who threatened to ‘shoot up’ Rio Grande High School was convicted Thursday


Frankie Esquibel

A man who threatened to "shoot up" Rio Grande High School was convicted Wednesday of carrying a gun on campus and assaulting school employees.

Frankie Esquibel, 21, was found guilty of carrying a deadly weapon on campus last year, two counts of assaulting a school employee and one count of assaulting a peace officer.

He faces a year and a half for carrying a gun on campus, a felony, and just under a year for each of the other counts. His sentencing hasn't been set yet.

"Our office has zero tolerance for guns on school property," 2nd Judicial District Attorney Sam Bregman said in a news release. "We are thankful a jury believes in making the safety of students and faculty a priority and found Mr. Esquibel guilty."

A call to Esquibel's attorney, Jonathan Ibarra, was not immediately returned Thursday afternoon.

According to a criminal complaint, an assistant principal and a security guard were driving around the Rio Grande High School campus in mid-April last year, looking for students who may be skipping class. They came upon Esquibel, a former student who had "caused disciplinary problems," sitting in a white Ford Mustang in a staff parking lot.

When they asked him what he was doing on campus, the staff members said he cursed at them and threatened to kill them. He also said he "had enough (expletive) in the car to shoot up the whole school."

After an Albuquerque Public Schools police officer arrived, Esquibel took off. Police searched his vehicle, finding a loaded Glock that was stolen from a police vehicle in Rio Rancho in 2016.

Police caught up with Esquibel and arrested him days later. He's not currently in custody, according to the Office of the District Attorney, after a judge in his case denied pre-trial detention as well as a later request to remand him into custody after the verdicts came down.


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