GREENBELT, Md. (WJZ) — A Coast Guard Lieutenant who pleaded guilty to firearms and drug charges after stockpiling weapons and creating a “hit list” made up of journalists, Democratic politicians and Supreme Court justices was sentenced Friday to 13 years and 4 months in prison.
At a news conference Friday evening, U.S. Attorney Robert Hur described Christopher Hasson as a self-described white nationalist who wanted to commit violence.
“Mr. Hasson crossed the line between racist thoughts and racist speech, he crossed the line into racist and violent action,” Hur said. “At that point that is when law enforcement needs to step in before harm is done and before lives are lost.”
Hur said Hasson stockpiled steroids, smoke grenades, sniper rifles and body armor “for the conflict he planned to initiate.”
Officials said the Coast Guard’s insider threat initially flagged concerns about Hasson, leading to an investigation and Hasson’s arrest.
“Preserving our nation’s security against terrorist threats continues to be the Justice Department’s top priority,” Hur said. “Lives were saved due to the skill and dedication of law enforcement in this case.”
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According to his plea agreement, Hasson owned a residence and lived in Currituck, North Carolina. In June 2016, Hasson moved to a residence in Silver Spring, Maryland, and worked at Coast Guard Headquarters in Washington, D.C.
Review of Hasson’s e-mail accounts, saved documents, text messages and Internet searches showed that he was inspired by racist murderers, stockpiled assault weapons, studied violence, and intended to exact retribution on minorities and those he considered traitors.
From Hasson’s residence, law enforcement officers recovered seven rifles, two shotguns, four pistols, two revolvers, an assembled firearm silencer and a disassembled firearm silencer.
Around the guns, agents found multiple magazines that could accept hundreds of rounds of ammunition.
According to court records, Hasson also purchased holsters, knives, magazines, ammunition, handguards, camping supplies, Meals-Ready-to-Eat, steel body armor plates, plate carriers, tactical vests and pouches, firearm repair kits and smoke grenades.
Prosecution originally wanted a 25-year sentence for Hasson.