LOS ANGELES – A Northern California man has been charged with a felony offense for allegedly posting online videos of himself threatening to kill multiple military personnel at the Fort Irwin army base in San Bernardino County, the Justice Department announced today.
Christian Ernest Beyer, 41, of Petaluma, has been charged with interstate threats, a crime that carries a statutory maximum sentence of five years in federal prison.
Beyer, an army veteran formerly stationed at Fort Irwin and who was court martialed in 2021 for assault, was arrested Wednesday at his father’s Sonoma County residence. A federal magistrate judge in San Francisco today ordered Beyer jailed without bond. Beyer is expected to be arraigned in the Central District of California in the coming weeks.
According to an affidavit filed with the complaint on Wednesday, on October 30, Beyer posted a YouTube video – using an account in his own name – in which he threatened to kill specific military personnel at Fort Irwin.
In one of the YouTube videos posted on October 30, Beyer allegedly said, “I had a great…life and I will…die for what I believe in. If you come to…get me and you have a …uniform on, you’re a[n]…enemy and I will not look at you as anything else. I will…fight you ‘til I take you down.”
On October 30, Beyer allegedly got into an altercation in Mendocino County with a group of elderly individuals after leaving his car in a neighborhood in which he did not live. Beyer allegedly brandished a knife at one of the elderly people, got in his car, drove away, then turned around and sped towards the group, driving his vehicle approximately 13 feet off the street at them. Beyer then sped away and drove to a parking lot, where local law enforcement confronted him, according to the affidavit. He allegedly got out of his car and fled, leading to a manhunt that ended with his arrest.
A criminal complaint contains allegations. All defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.
The FBI is investigating this matter as part of its Los Angeles Joint Terrorism Task Force.
Assistant United States Attorney Daniel H. Weiner of the General Crimes Section is prosecuting this case.