Charges Filed Against Duluth Man after Arrest at School

Updated: April 09, 2019 08:29 PM

The man who was arrested at Duluth East High School last Friday has been formally charged with threats of violence and possession of a machine gun conversion kit.

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A criminal complaint filed Tuesday says Travis John Anthony Warner Busch, 35, of Duluth was at the school working as a job coach, supervising a student for a shift in the cafeteria.  Police have said that Busch does not work for the district but was authorized to be in the school. The public defender said that Busch has held the job coach position for 6 years.

Police received a tip that he had made a series of threats "related to engaging in gun fire with law enforcement."  The complaint alleges that the threats allegedly included "Don't do that I will murder ever cop at my door" and "If the cops come they will die through the door," with one remark saying that "this is hyphothetical."

He allegedly sent a message while at East, saying, "I'm at school and I don't know what I am going to do. I seem to still lack the fortitude to take this gun out and start shooting." 

In court on Tuesday, the public defender said the comments were made to a close relative of Busch, and not directly to anyone related to the school.

Busch also allegedly referred to a person convicted of a school shooting as "my hero" and compared his firing capabilities to the mass shooting in Las Vegas.  He also allegedly stated that he could shoot at the high school.

The complaint says Busch also stated, "I will die before I let them take me."

Busch was arrested after officers searched his vehicle and found a compact .357 pistol, which was cocked with one round in the chamber, inside a boot in the trunk.

Duluth schools were put into soft lockdown until Busch was arrested.

During the first appearance Tuesday, prosecutor Kristen Swanson asked for substantial bail, due to the statements made. She asked for in excess of $100,000.

The public defender asked for reasonable bail. He also mentioned that Busch is on medication, and that Busch believes his current prescriptions may have altered his mindset. He also said that Busch has volunteered to forego having any firearms during the duration of this case.

Law enforcement seized four firearms, ammunition and accessories were from his home.

Judge Dale Harris set bail at $200,000, and there was no referral to supervised release.  Busch has no criminal history and is originally from Texas.

His next court appearance is set for April 30th.

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