Police arrest suspicious man who rode school bus, left behind loaded gun magazine

Posted: Updated:
By Catherine Holland By Catherine Holland
By Andrew Michalscheck By Andrew Michalscheck
By Catherine Holland By Catherine Holland
By Catherine Holland By Catherine Holland

PHOENIX -- Phoenix police have arrested a man who boarded a school bus on Thursday morning.

Jeremy West, 29, is facing charges of endangerment, criminal trespass, and carrying a weapon on school property.

According to police, a 14-year-old was returning to his home near Georgia and 27th avenues on Wednesday when he was approached by a man who asked him if he wanted “a cigarette or a fix.”

The boy told the man no and went into his home.

On Thursday morning, the 14-year-old boarded a bus to school and saw the same man from the day before get on the bus and take a seat in the back.

The adult bus assistant asked the man if he was with the boy and the man said he was.

The bus eventually arrived at Simpson Elementary School, which is when the man reportedly asked the bus driver where the nearest church was located and left the bus.

Another child on the bus subsequently found a fully loaded 9mm magazine on the seat where the man had been sitting.

The child handed the magazine over to the bus assistant. The school bus employees then contacted their supervisors who in turn called Simpson Elementary School.

Phoenix police officers were called to the school, but they were unable to locate the man.

"Soon after media displayed the suspect's photo during the early evening broadcast, citizens began calling Phoenix Police with information that led to his identity," Officer James Holmes said in a news alert Friday morning.

Officers arrested West without incident at the same Phoenix apartment complex where the 14-year-old he spoke to on Wednesday lives. Police say there is no connection between the two. West reportedly was staying with somebody who lives in the complex.

"The suspect made admissions to being on the bus and evidence supporting the charges was recovered," Holmes said.

Included in that evidence is a pistol that was located in West's room.

West also told police that he had been hearing voices and got on the bus because he feared for his life.