EL PASO COUNTY, Colo. (KKTV) - UPDATE (12/14/17):
An ex-Fountain Valley school employee was sentenced to two years and six months in prison for his role in a bomb scare.
Background: A member of the El Paso County bomb squad searches the Fountain Valley School campus on May 16. 2017. Foreground: Bryan Bolding, accused in the bomb scare.
The sentence was handed out on Thursday for Bryan Bolding. Back in May, a device resembling a "military-grade" bomb was discovered in the Fountain Valley School cafeteria, prompting a campus-wide evacuation for more than five hours.
El Paso County Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Jacqueline Kirby told 11 News that the device was a fake, but well-crafted enough that an explosives expert who saw a photo early on in the investigation said it looked like a real bomb. But according to arrest papers, a teen suspect said it was supposed to ignite and they had a remote detonator to do so, but it failed to go off.
ORIGINAL STORY (5/26/17): The 4th Judicial District Attorney’s Office asked a judge to raise Bryan Bolding’s bond Thursday morning.
They cited various reasons, including 28 firearms that were found in Bolding’s home, some without out serial numbers. The district attorney's office also said that after Bolding was released on bond the first time, he returned shortly after to the Fountain Valley School's campus and security found him walking through a pasture to his home.
Bolding’s defense attorney stated all of the weapons were legal and that Bolding is an avid hunter. The defense also said Bolding went back to his residence on campus to get some belongings and shower, has no criminal history and fought the district attorney's office’s motion to raise the bond.
The judge ultimately decided to raise the bond to $50,000. Bolding was taken into custody following the hearing. By Thursday night, he already bonded out.
Parents expressed their safety concerns Thursday if he were to bond out before Saturday's graduation. It's unclear at this time if extra security will be in place.
PREVIOUS (5/16/17): A smoke bomb found near a Security Sonic was a dry run for a bomb scare at an area boarding school one day later, law enforcement tells 11 News.
A device resembling a "military-grade" bomb was discovered in the Fountain Valley School cafeteria Tuesday afternoon, prompting a campus-wide evacuation for more than five hours.
El Paso County Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Jacqueline Kirby told 11 News that the device was a fake, but well-crafted enough that an explosives expert who saw a photo early on in the investigation said it looked like a real bomb. But according to arrest papers, the teen suspect said it was supposed to ignite and they had a remote detonator to do so, but it failed to go off.
The all-clear was given around 8 p.m. The school IT director and his 16-year-old son were both arrested.
Kirby said authorities have since learned that a seemingly unrelated smoke bomb Monday night by the Sonic and Gold's Gym on Main Street was connected to the device at the school. When the smoke bomb first went off, law enforcement could not find any suspects, but were given a photo of the bomb by the person who called 911. Noticing similarities between the smoke bomb and the device left at the school, Kirby said the sheriff's office has been able to link the two. The smoke bomb was a dry run for the incident at the school, Kirby said.
Bryan Bolding and his son are both facing a long list of charges, including: possession and use of a hoax incendiary device, terrorist training activities, contributing to the delinquency of a minor, conspiracy, attempting to influence a public servant, reckless endangerment, child abuse without injury and several counts of felony menacing.
Bolding bonded out of the El Paso County jail sometime between Tuesday night and Wednesday morning on a $3,000 bond.
Arrest papers obtained by 11 News, Bolding's employment was about to expire and was told in February that his contract would not be renewed.
When detectives interviewed Bolding's son, he initially denied having any knowledge of the previous events that happened at the school. When detectives confronted him with more specific information from witnesses, he admitted that his father taught him how to build the devices about two weeks earlier. He said their initial plan was to detonate a device at the upcoming graduation and fill the tent with smoke. They later agreed to change their plan and put the device in the cafeteria. Bolding's son said the device failed to ignite.
Bolding's son went on to say the reason they wanted to detonate the device was to cause "terror and panic." Bolding initially professed his ignorance before confessing he had planned the event for a few weeks. Bolding told detectives he wanted to this, "just to set off a smoke bomb."
The arrest papers conclude Bolding and his son admitted to initially targeting the school's graduation. They both admitted they targeted the part of the cafeteria with the most people in it to incite panic.