The Latest: Lawyer: Coast Guardsman’s case ‘sensationalized’

GREENBELT, Md. (AP) — The Latest on a Coast Guard lieutenant accused of stockpiling weapons and creating a hit list (all times local):

1:25 p.m.

A defense attorney says the case of a Coast Guard lieutenant who pleaded guilty to gun and drug charges has been “mischaracterized and sensationalized.”

Assistant federal public defender Liz Oyer made the comment Thursday, shortly after her client, Christopher Hasson, pleaded guilty to four counts in a Maryland federal court.

The pleas resolve a case in which prosecutors called Hasson a self-described white nationalist and domestic terrorist intent on carrying out a mass killing. They said he targeted Supreme Court justices, prominent Democrats and TV journalists.

In a written statement, Oyer said Hasson “was not plotting a terrorist attack or any of the abhorrent acts that the prosecution has repeatedly speculated about but never actually charged.”

She said Hasson “deeply regrets the pain and embarrassment that he has caused his family and the U.S. Coast Guard.”

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12:50 p.m.

A Coast Guard lieutenant accused of stockpiling weapons and targeting Supreme Court justices, prominent Democrats and TV journalists has pleaded guilty to gun and drug charges.

Christopher Hasson’s guilty plea to all four of the counts he faced on Thursday resolves a case in which federal prosecutors called him a self-described white nationalist and domestic terrorist intent on carrying out a mass killing.

But prosecutors haven’t filed any terrorism-related charges against Hasson since his February arrest. His trial had been scheduled for Oct. 21 in Greenbelt, Maryland. Now he’ll be sentenced on Jan. 31, to as much as 31 years in prison.

Prosecutors claim Hasson drew up what appeared to be a hit list that included House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer and Democratic presidential hopefuls Elizabeth Warren, Cory Booker and Kamala Harris. They said several network TV journalists also were mentioned.

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