By Henry K. Lee
An engineer who graduated from UC Davis threatened in an email to use his purported military sniper training to kill state Sen. Leland Yee, authorities said in newly released court documents.
“I can wait hidden for you to walk past my mil dot scope,” Everett Basham, 45, wrote in an email sent to Yee on Jan. 11 under the alias “Tran Cho,” California Highway Patrol investigator Byron Wong wrote in records filed in Santa Clara County Superior Court.
In the email, Basham boasted of his shooting prowess, claiming to be a “trained Marine sniper” who “can hit a spinal cord at 1.5 miles, making a head become red mist.”
He suggested he would use his skills if Yee, D-San Francisco, succeeded in passing a bill that would ban AR-15 semiautomatic rifles in California as assault weapons, Wong wrote.
“I have 39 confirmed kills in Afghanistan,” he allegedly wrote. “Don’t make me get to 40.”
Basham, who once worked with Apple Inc. co-founder Steve Wozniak, is listed in a LinkedIn profile as a UCD graduate who studied electrical engineering and psychology.
Officials with the Marine Corps said Wednesday that they could find no record of Basham having been in the service.
Basham ended the email by saying, “Check 6 every day,” referring to a military term for “watch your back,” and told him to read the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
Yee declined to comment Wednesday, referring to previous statements in which he said he would continue his fight against gun violence.
Basham has pleaded not guilty to 10 felony counts, including making threats with a firearm, possessing a destructive device and possessing three assault weapons, two of which were semiautomatic rifles with the capacity to have detachable magazines, prosecutors said.
A search of his home in Santa Clara uncovered a stockpile of bomb-making material, illegal weapons and “failed attempts of counterfeited military ID cards,” Wong wrote.
Among the volatile substances found on Bashams’s property were three ounces of mannitol hexanitrate, a powerful explosive, which the bomb squad detonated in his front yard after determining it was too risky to move it, authorities said.
— Reach Henry K. Lee at [email protected]