Port of Los Angeles employee gets house arrest in bomb hoax

The Port of Los Angeles.
The Port of Los Angeles.
Mae Ryan/KPCC

Prosecutors say a former port employee has been sentenced in connection to a bomb hoax that forced the evacuation of a tugboat facility and shipping terminal at the Port of Los Angeles for several hours.

In a release Tuesday, City Attorney Carmen Trutanich says 41-year-old John Edward Bearden pleaded no contest before being sentenced to five months of house arrest and probation.

Bearden was a mechanic at the port's tugboat facility on Terminal Island when he attached a fake bomb to a forklift on June 20.

A forklift operator discovered the fake device. It looked like a bomb but was metal oil filters, batteries and wires bound with duct tape and black electrical tape.

Authorities say the hoax cost the port $126,000. A restitution hearing is scheduled for June 27.