A Huntington Beach man who was hired to release doves at a funeral in Orange County pleaded not guilty Friday to a charge of making criminal threats against a customer who hired him but refused to pay because the birds were never released.
Mitchell Ralph Todd, 51, was scheduled to return to court for a pretrial hearing Feb. 4 at the Harbor Justice Center in Newport Beach.
Todd was arrested Dec. 13 after being charged a week earlier, according to Michelle Van Der Linden of the Orange County District Attorney’s Office.
A search of his home turned up 57 firearms, nearly 30,000 rounds of ammunition, more than 100 magazines, body armor, swords and Nazi paraphernalia, Van Der Linden said. Police also found a practice bomb, which typically contain non-explosive charges.
Todd is not facing any criminal charges related to the cache of weapons.
According to police and prosecutors, a man hired Todd — who owns a company called OC Doves — to release doves at his son’s funeral in November. Police said the funeral wound up running long, and the doves were never released, but Todd demanded that he be paid anyway.
Todd allegedly left a series of increasingly threatening voicemails, including one in which he allegedly told the man, “Maybe you need to go be with your son,” police said. Prosecutors said one of the final calls included the sound of a gun being cocked.
If convicted as charged, Todd faces three years in state prison, she said.