A 49-year-old active duty U.S. Coast Guard lieutenant arrested on gun and drug charges has been accused by federal prosecutors of being a “domestic terrorist, bent on committing acts dangerous to human life that are intended to affect governmental conduct.” In a court filing, prosecutors say the lieutenant was inspired by far-right Norwegian terrorist Anders Breivik and has corresponded with known white supremacists. He identified himself as a “white nationalist” who has advocated for “focused violence” in order to establish a “white homeland” and created a hit list that includes top Democrats and members of the media, prosecutors say.
Christopher Hasson, of Silver Spring, Maryland, was charged with possession of firearms and ammunition by an unlawful user or addict of controlled substances, and with possession of tramadol, but prosecutors in the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Maryland called those alleged offenses the “proverbial tip of the iceberg.”
In a chilling court document, federal prosecutors explain how Hasson appeared to be researching the Norwegian terrorist, studying the mass killer’s manifesto and gathering weapons, ammunition and other supplies with the intention of carrying out a similar attack in the United States in an effort to become the American Anders Breivik. The Norwegian killed 77 people in his 2011 attack. Prosecutors did not reveal if Hasson had a specific date in mind for an attack and also didn’t say how he was discovered.
Prosecutors said in court documents that Hasson stockpiled weapons and was planning a domestic terror attack targeting Democratic politicians and journalists. He wrote in a letter to a Neo-Nazi leader that he had been dreaming of ways to “kill almost every last person on earth,” prosecutors said. Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas Wisdom wrote, “the defendant intends to murder innocent civilians on a scale rarely seen in this country.”
The case was first uncovered by Seamus Hughes, a former Senate counterterrorism advisor who now works with the George Washington University Program on Extremism, which provides “analysis and policy solutions on radicalization, terrorism and extremism.” You can learn more about the GWUPoE and Hughes’ work here. Hughes, the program’s deputy director, has revealed details on several cases involving American extremism and terrorism, often finding the information in federal court documents before the media. Federal authoroties did not release a press release or statement on the case prior to Hughes’ tweets on February 20 about the arrest.
Hasson remains in federal custody and has been held on a temporary detention order since his arrest on February 15. The explosive details found by Hughes and the Program on Extremism were detailed in a motion by federal prosecutors asking a judge to continue Hasson’s detention prior to trial.
U.S. Attorney for the District of Maryland Robert Hur and his office have declined further comment on the case beyond confirming Hasson’s arrest. The FBI has also not commented further. It is not clear if Hasson has hired an attorney who could speak on his behalf and his wife and other family members did not immediately return requests for comment from Heavy.
Hasson is a supporter of President Donald Trump and wrote that “liberalist/globalist ideology is destroying traditional peoples (especially) white,” according to prosecutors. Hasson added, “No way to counteract without violence. It should push for more crack down bringing more people to our side. Much blood will have to be spilled to get whitey off the couch. For some no amount of blood will be enough. They will die as will the traitors who actively work toward our demise. Looking to Russia with hopeful eyes or any land that despises the west’s liberalism. Excluding, of course, the Muslim scum. Who rightfully despite the west’s liberal degeneracy.”
Prosecutors said Hasson had also “conducted online searches” for “pro-Russian, neo-fascist and neo-Nazi literature,” and made “thousands of visits,” to sites with that information.
Here’s what you need to know about Lt. Christopher Hasson:
1. Hasson Has Worked at the Coast Guard Headquarters in D.C. Since 2016 & Served in the Marines From 1988 to 1993
Lieutenant Christopher Paul Hasson has been stationed at the U.S. Coast Guard Headquarters in Washington D.C. since 2016, according to court documents. He was promoted to lieutenant in June 2016, records show. He was commissioned into the Coast Guard on June 1, 2012.
According to court documents, Hasson worked in “National Security Cutter Acquisition.”
Federal prosecutors said Hasson served in the U.S. Marine Corps from 1988 to 1993 and was in the Army National Guard for two years in the mid-1990s.
Prosecutors have not said what led to the investigation into Hasson on the drug and gun charges.
Hasson is married and has children, including a son who also served in the Marine Corps, according to social media profiles. He has previously lived in California, Virginia, South Carolina, Nevada, Arizona, North Carolina, New Jersey and has been in Silver Spring, Maryland, since 2017. The tattoed Coast Guard officer Christopher Hasson is pictured in a now-deleted photo on Facebook with family members.
A criminal complaint was filed against Hasson on February 14, 2019, along with an affidavit from FBI Special Agent Alexandria Thoman. The case was sealed until Hasson’s arrest on February 15.
Thoman obtained emails in which Hasson wrote about owning and trying to buy guns, along with talking about going to gun ranges and shooting clubs in Maryland and Virginia, including the “NRA Range” at the National Rifle Association headquarters in Virginia. He bought guns at the NRA range, according to court documents.
Thoman wrote in her affidavit that Hasson had been buying Tramadol, a prescription painkiller, from an unidentified person likely located in Mexico, since October 2016. The drugs were being sent from locations in California to addresses in Maryland and North Carolina, including Hasson’s home.
“Other evidence suggests that Hasson is a user, rather than a distributor, of the Tramadol,” Thoman wrote.
NBC News, citing a source, reports the Coast Guard began investigating Hasson with help from the FBI and other federal law enforcement after he was flagged because of extremist internet searches and visits to extremist websites at work.
“He wasn’t too surprised to be arrested, but he was worried about law enforcement officers entering his home, the unnamed federal law enforcement official told NBC News.
You can read the full criminal complaint below or here:
2. Prosecutors Say Hasson Wrote in a Letter, ‘Send Me Your Violence So I May Unleash It Onto Their Heads … Guide My Hate to Make a Lasting Impression on the World’
Prosecutors said in court documents that Hasson appeared to have been studying the 1,500-page manifesto written by Anders Behring Breivik prior to his attacks in Norway. Breivik killed eight people in a bombing in Oslo before fatally shooting 69 people on the island of Utoya.
Breivik had embraced “crusader nationalism,” which he believed would counteract the “Islamization” of Europe, and believed Europe was being destroyed by “cultural Marxism and political correctness,” according to prosecutors. Prosecutors said Hasson was following Breivik’s manifesto’s instructions to amass firearms, food, disguises and survival supplies.
He had also searched in recent weeks for, “what if Trump illegally impeached,” “best place in DC to see congress people,” “where in dc to [sic] congress live,” “civil war if trump impeached,” and “social democrats usa.”
In September 2017, he wrote a letter directed to a “known American neo-Nazi leader,” prosecutors said. He identified himself as a white nationalist for more than 30 years. The letter was sent seven weeks after the Charlottesville rally:
In the letter, he said he has “been a skinhead,” since before his time in the military. He wrote, that he fully supports a “white homeland.”
“I never saw a reason for mass protest or wearing uniforms marching around provoking people with swastikas etc.,” Hasson wrote. “I was and am a man of action you cannot change minds protesting like that. However you can make change with a little focused violence.”
You can read the full letter below:
I am writing you regards to your ideas behind North West migration. To date I have read most of your books and briefly looked at your website. I am a long time White Nationalist, having been a skinhead 30 plus years ago before my time in the military. I have served in 3 branches currently serving as an Officer (never attended college) with 2 years till I hit mandatory retirement at 30. . . While I fully support the idea of a white homeland, my friends who still play at being a skinhead at 40 plus years old say that you are an informant. That is neither here nor there it is not an accusation the person who told me this served a 12 year prison sentence and never ratted me out so I will not dispute him nor will I accuse you. I never saw a reason for mass protest or wearing uniforms marching around provoking people with swastikas etc. I was and am a man of action you cannot change minds protesting like that. However you can make change with a little focused violence. . . The government has expertly infiltrated and destroyed from within most if not all Pro White organizations. . . . We need a white homeland as Europe seems lost. How long we can hold out there and prevent niggerization of the Northwest until whites wake up on their own or are forcibly made to make a decision whether to roll over and die or to stand up remains to be seen. But I know a few younger ones that are tired of waiting and I feel we need them to resettle and build a community before they throw their life away with some desperate measure like shooting up a mosque in an area that doesn’t want us. They need a Homeland to fight for as America has turned its back on them. I know more than a few that went this path and it’s a f*cking waste.
In a letter written in 2017 recovered from his email drafts, Hasson wrote, “Please send me your violence that I may unleash it onto their heads … Guide my hate to make a lasting impression on this world.”
It is not clear who the letter was meant to be sent to. It was addressed to, “dear friends, maybe that’s a bit of a misnomer. Acquaintances more likely.”
In court documents, prosecutors said Hasson wrote in the 2017 letter that he was thinking about biological attacks and targeting food supplies.
He wrote, “I think a plague would be most successful but how do I acquire the needed/Spanish flu, botulism, anthrax not sure yet but will find something.”
He said he would start with the biological attacks targeting the food supply and then would begin a “bombing/sniper campaign.”
Hasson wrote, “What can I do, I will not do nothing…It seems inevitable that we are doomed. I don’t think I can cause complete destruction on my own, however if I could enlist the unwitting help of another power/country would be best. Who and how to provoke???”
He also listed things he wanted to accomplish in the next four years, including, getting out of debt, buying a van to convert it to diesel, buy land for family out west or in the North Carolina mountains.”
“During unrest target both sides to increase tension,” he wrote. “In other words provoke gov/police to over react which should help to escalate violence. BLM protests or other left crap would be ideal to incite to violence.”
You can read the motion for a detention order below:
3. Hasson Had a List of Targets Including Democratic Congressional Leaders & Media Personalities & Searched for the ‘Best Place in DC to See Congress People’ & ‘Are Supreme Court Justices Protected’
Christopher Hasson had a list of potential targets that was similar to Anders Breivik’s list of traitors. The spreadsheet found by federal prosecutors included several prominent Democratic members of Congress and media personalities.
Prosecutors said he built the list while “reviewing the MSNBC, CNN and Fox News websites,” as well as other websites, on his work computer. It was created on January 19.
The list included:
-“Joey,” who prosecutors said is believed to be MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough
– MSNBC’s Chris Hayes
– “pelosi,” presumably House Speaker Nancy Pelosi
– “Sen Blumen Jew,” who prosecutors believe to be U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut.
– “Sen kaine,” believed to be U.S. Senator Tim Kaine of Virginia
– “Shumer,” presumed to be U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer of New York
– CNN’s Don Lemon
– “gillibran,” presumably U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand
– “poca warren,” presumably U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts
– “cortez,” believed to be Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York
– “booker,” believed to be U.S. Senator Cory Booker of New Jersey
– Former U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke, of Texas
– U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters, of California
– U.S. Rep. Sheila Jackson, of Texas
– “iihan omar,” presumed to be U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar, of Minnesota
– CNN’s Chris Cuomo
– Democratic Socialists of America
– CNN’s Van Jones
– “podesta,” presumed to be former Hillary Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta
According to prosecutors, the list is “consistent with the directions in the Breivik manifesto,” which divided targets into categories A, B or C:
This classification system is used to identify various individual cultural Marxist/multiculturalist traitors. The intention of the system is to easier identify priority targets and will also serve as the foundation for the future ‘Nuremberg trials’ once the European cultural conservatives reassert political and military control of any given country. Any category A, B or C traitor is an individual who has deliberately used his or her influence in a way which makes him or her indirectly or directly guilty of the charges specified in this document: 1-8. Many of these individuals will attempt to claim ‘ignorance’ of the crimes they are accused of
According to Breivik’s system, category A was the “most influential and high profile traitors,” including political leaders, media leaders and cultural leaders.
Hasson had searched for “most liberal senators,” “do senators have [secret service] protection,” and searched for Scarborough after seeing a headline in which the MSNBC host claimed Trump to be “the worst ever” president. He also looked up where the host’s show, “Morning Joe,” is filmed, along with his home, prosecutors said.
Hasson made many anti-Semitic remarks in emails obtained by the FBI, including writing, “I don’t know if there truly is a ‘conspiracy’ of ((((People)))) out to destroy me and mine, but there is an attack none the less. For that reason I will strike, I can’t just strike to wound I must find a way to deliver a blow that cannot be shaken off. Maybe many blows that will cause the needed turmoil.”
The “(((People)))” is a coded reference to Jewish people.
4. Police Seized 15 Firearms, Including Long Guns & Rifles, From Hasson’s Home Along With More Than 1,000 Rounds of Ammunition, Narcotics & What Appeared to Be Human Growth Hormones
According to court documents, investigators seized 15 firearms, including long guns and rifles, from Christopher Hasson’s home in Silver Spring, Maryland. They also seized more than 1,000 rounds of ammunition. And prosecutors said he made nearly two dozen purchases of firearms or related equipment over the last two years.
Police also seized narcotics, including the prescription painkiller Tramadol, along with what appeared to be vials of human growth hormones and synthetic urine that can be used to bypass random drug screenings, according to court documents.
The FBI affidavit states that Hasson made two purchases from “Alternative Lifestyle” in 2018 for “Golden Flask Synthetic Urine,” and “The Clean Kit,” which investigators said are used to avoid a positive urinalysis test. The FBI said Hasson would be subject to random tests as part of his job. He had one such test in January 2018 and tested negative for drugs.
According to court documents, Tramadol pills were also found at Hasson’s desk at the Coast Guard headquarters in D.C., hidden inside a bottle labeled “Fish Flox.”
He wrote about drug use in a letter uncovered by investigators, saying he needed to “come off TDL [Tramadol], clear my head.” He said he wanted to “move to friendly area and start to organize. Get leadership within the community, sheriff, city manager, mayor, lawyer? Not sure but start now. Be ready.”
According to prosecutors, Anders Breivik used narcotics and steroids prior to his 2011 attack because he believed it heightened his abilities. On January 3, 2019, Hasson searched Breivik’s manifesto for “steroids,” and read his diary entry on the topic, prosecutors said.
Hasson encouraged recipients of his letter to “stockpile” in five locations, packing food, guns, clothing, gear,” while learning basic chemistry. “[Buy] land put 3 home sand multiple hides. Have way to get out and start hitting back.”
He also cited Eric Rudolph, the Olympic Park Bomber, as an inspiration.
He wrote, “Food/fuel may be the key, if I can disrupt two or three weeks. When (people) start to loot steal protest dress as cop and shoot them. Burn down Apt complex, bar the doors first. Thermite on gas station tank.”
5. Hasson Was Ordered Held for an Additional 14 Days During a Hearing on Thursday While Federal Prosecutors Consider Bringing Additional Charges Against Him
Lieutenant Christopher Hasson appeared in court on Thursday, February 21, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Maryland. U.S. Magistrate Judge Charles B. Day ordered Hasson to remain in custody for 14 more days while federal prosecutors consider additional charges.
“The government is seeking detention for Mr. Hasson pending trial,” a spokesperson for the U.S. Attorney for the District of Maryland said in an email. “We will not be commenting further on the case at this time.”
In a statement, a Coast Guard spokesperson said, “An active duty Coast Guard member stationed at Coast Guard Headquarters in Washington, D.C., was arrested last week on illegal weapons and drug charges as a result of an ongoing investigation led by Coast Guard Investigation Services, in cooperation with the FBI and the Dept. of Justice.” The spokesperson declined further comment because the investigation is ongoing.