Evidence from social media leads to arrests of dangerous teens

Law enforcement is using social media to get dangerous teens off the streets. 

“Make no mistake about it, this young man had in his possession a weapon of war,” Bernalillo County District Attorney Raul Torrez said. 

One of those teens is 17-year-old Nathaniel Valenzuela. He was arrested earlier this month in the South Valley following an investigation by the Violent Crime Task Force. 

“The mission of the Violent Crime Task Force is to focus on repeat violent offenders who are engaged in the trafficking of firearms and drugs,” FBI Special Agent James Langenberg said. 

Using evidence from Snapchat, task force members, including FBI agents, APD and State Police officers, got a search warrant for Valenzuela’s property. They found multiple weapons, including an AR-15 and a stash of the opioid, fentanyl. 

Agents say at least one of those weapons is being tested by APD to see if it’s been used in other violent crimes. The teen is being charged as a juvenile. The state plans to ask that he be held until trial. 

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