ARC student arrested for allegedly flying drone over NFL game

(Left) Tracy Mapes' staff photo from his time on the AR Current in the spring of 2016. (File photo) (Right) Tracy Mapes' mugshot at the Santa Clara Police Department on Nov. 26 after being arrested for allegedly dropping anti-media leaflets over Levi Stadium. (Photo courtesy of Santa Clara Police Department)

[UPDATED] An American River College student was arrested on Sunday after allegedly dropping anti-media leaflets from a drone over Levi’s Stadium and Oakland-Alameda Stadium during two different NFL games. 

Tracy Mapes, 55, attended ARC and served on the Current in the spring of 2016 before leaving the publication after butting heads with several staff members, according to former editor-in-chief Jordan Schauberger. It was during his time on the Current that Mapes began compiling his personal anecdotes into a public manifesto he named the ‘Red ‘X’ Society.’

The Current contacted its former advisor Walter Hammerwold for comment, but he declined due to Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) restrictions, federal privacy laws that protect  educational privacy for students.

According to Santa Clara Police Officer Dan Moreno, the investigation has become a federal one because Mapes allegedly violated federal anti-drone laws due to Levi’s Stadium proximity to McCandless Tower Airport.

Moreno also told the Current that both federal and state investigators are currently looking into Mapes and the Red ‘X’ Society.

Mapes published part of his manifesto on a website called the Portland Independent Media Center on Nov. 23, 2014. In the post, he threatened arson, property destruction and homicide against those that the Red ‘X’ Society deemed as enemies.

According to Public Information Officer Scott Crow, Mapes is still attending ARC. Crow also said that Mapes has yet to receive a diploma. Crow said that he could not release any more information on Mapes due to privacy laws.

The Current has also reached out to the office of Kate Jaques who served as a dean to ARC’s humanties department, which oversaw the journalism department and currently serves as an ARC Title IX Equity Officer, she was unable to comment.

Nov. 29, 1:16 p.m. This story has been updated to reflect new information.

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About the Author

Luis Gael Jimenez

Luis Gael Jimenez is an award-winning journalist and photojournalist. He is a contributor for the Sacramento News and Review and has spent three semesters on the American River Current, where he currently serves as editor-in-chief. Jimenez has served as the managing editor and arts and culture editor in the past.

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