Man pleads to charges after threatening senator over gun control bill

State Sen. Leland Yee (D-San Francisco) had alerted officers that he'd received a death threat for pushing a bill that would restrict assault weapons. Above, Yee in 2001.
(Ben Margot / Associated Press)

SACRAMENTO -- A Bay Area man pleaded no contest Monday to charges stemming from his threat to kill state Sen. Leland Yee (D-San Francisco) because he was angry that the lawmaker had introduced gun control bills.

Everett Basham, who authorities say was building homemade bombs, was arrested in February.

On Monday, he pleaded no contest to seven felony counts including making a terrorist threat and possessing assault weapons and a destructive device, as well as three misdemeanor charges, according to Sean Webby, a spokesman for the Santa Clara County district attorney’s office.


Basham could face a sentence of up 10 years in prison.

“I appreciate that justice was served in this matter and I hope that this man receives all the help he needs,” Yee said in a statement Monday. “The professionalism of the California Highway Patrol, the FBI, the Santa Clara district attorney’s office and their partners ensured that a dangerous threat was removed from our community before anyone was hurt.”

Yee alerted officers that he had received a death threat for pushing a bill restricting assault weapons. Basham was arrested by the CHP at a relative’s home in Sunnyvale.

When a SWAT team later searched Basham’s residence in Santa Clara, officers observed what authorities described as “precursors to homemade explosives.”

After digging sandbagged trenches in the front yard, the police ended up detonating a small amount of substances that they were unable to identify.

A LinkedIn page that appears to be Basham’s identifies him as a Silicon Valley engineer who once worked with Apple Inc. co-founder Steve Wozniak.


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