Accused explosive-package mailer was a prolific 911 caller

Thanh Cong Phan, of Everett, made rambling calls this year complaining of mind control.

Thanh Cong Phan (Yolo County Sheriff’s Office)

Thanh Cong Phan (Yolo County Sheriff’s Office)

EVERETT — An Everett man charged Tuesday with a federal crime for allegedly mailing potential bombs to government agencies in Virginia and Washington, D.C., appears to have made a rambling 911 call complaining of mind control while at the Mill Creek post office, newly released records show.

That’s the place where Thanh Cong Phan is accused of later shipping off at least one of the packages.

Phan, 43, allegedly sent 11 packages that showed up Monday at government offices in and around the nation’s capital. Each package contained what appeared to be a homemade explosive using a glass bottle filled with black powder, fixed with a fuse and a GPS device, court papers say.

The defendant was linked to the mailings after U.S. Postal Service inspectors used a tracking number on one sent to FBI headquarters. That package was mailed March 16 from a USPS kiosk in Mill Creek. Surveillance photos reportedly show Phan sending the item, according to court papers.

On Jan. 9, Phan called emergency dispatchers in Snohomish County and reported that he was at the post office in Mill Creek and he wanted help, according to Snohomish County 911 recordings.

Phan said he wanted to report that “high-tech neuroscience terrorists” were controlling his body. He appeared to want the dispatcher’s assistance in documenting his troubles and to share that information with the FBI.

It took about three minutes for the dispatcher to persuade Phan that wasn’t possible and that he needed to contact the federal agency himself.

“OK. Then never mind anyway,” Phan said.

Phan made at least six calls to Snohomish County 911 this year, at all times of the day and night. The Herald on Thursday obtained the recordings through a public records request. The longest call stretches nearly six minutes.

Phan told 911 the terrorists were using invisible cameras to monitor his communications and control his body. At times, he mentioned Naval Station Everett.

He said he had tried to report the torture to local police and the FBI for years, but they hung up on him, rebuked him or didn’t listen. He also said he got into trouble for calling 911 too much, he said.

In one call, Phan said he “could not find a federal agent who understands the technology. I know officers don’t understand. They don’t believe this.”

During another call, Phan mentioned MK-Ultra, a clandestine government project that began in the 1950s and lasted into the mid 1970s. It involved the Central Intelligence Agency, drugs such as LSD and attempts at mind control.

Each of the packages Phan is suspected of sending contained a typed letter “with ramblings about neuropsychology, mind control, and other subjects, including terrorism,” according to court papers.

Phan was known to federal agents for having sent numerous similar messages to government officials, according to court papers.

Phan now is charged in U.S. District Court in Seattle with one count of shipment of explosive materials. If convicted of the felony, he could be sentenced to up to 10 years behind bars, officials said.

The defendant has a long history of mental problems and brushes with the law, records show.

Scott North: 425-339-3431; north@herald Twitter: @snorthnews.

Talk to us

More in Local News

Mariner High School. (Mariner High School)
Police: Teen arrested for threats against 3 Mukilteo schools

After a social media post, the 14-year-old is being investigated for allegedly threatening to shoot and bomb.

Previous Smith Ave campers have relocated to across the  'no-sit, no-lie' ordinance boundary and set up on Hewitt at the US 2 entrance in Everett. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Snohomish County proposes 0.1% sales tax for affordable housing

The tax could be approved without a public vote. It would allow for a dramatic increase in new housing for low-income people.

A rainbow appears in front of Andy Huestis and his girlfriend Alisha Garvin as they and other families gather to remember the victims on the third anniversary of the Oso mudslide on Wednesday, March 22, 2017 in Oso, Wa. Huestis' sister, Christina Jefferds, and her baby granddaughter, Sanoah Violet Huestis, were among the 43 people killed in the mudslide.  (Andy Bronson / The Herald)
Funding secured: Mudslide memorial will be a place to remember

Since 2014, families have mourned at a roadside shrine near Oso, but “we knew we needed something bigger.”

With omicron likely to appear here, officials urge boosters

Washington’s state epidemiologist said it could be weeks before we know more about the new coronavirus variant.

A traveler points to Bedal Campground on a map posted along the Mountain Loop Highway in June. (Sue Misao / Herald file)
Mountain Loop Highway to close for the winter

The 14-mile stretch of gravel road will shut down starting Friday. Snow has hit higher elevations.

Everett man hospitalized after crashing into wall off I-5

He reportedly drove onto a bus-only ramp near the Mountlake Terrace Transit Center and hit a cement wall.

A banner outside the door of Goodies in Mountlake Terrace says, “$795,000 Hit 5 ticket sold here.” (Andrea Brown / The Herald) 20211201
Who has the $795,000 Hit 5 ticket sold in Mountlake Terrace?

The winner has until Dec. 8 to claim the prize from a lottery ticket sold June 11 at Goodies Food.

Bradley Woolard (U.S. Attorney's Office)
Arlington-area man who led fentanyl ring gets 20 years

When Bradley Woolard’s home was raided in 2018, authorities found more than 12,000 fentanyl pills.

Approved Legislative District Map (Washington State Redistricting Commission)
State Supreme Court declines to draw new redistricting plan

All nine justices said a bipartisan commission achieved its primary purpose, despite missing a deadline.

Most Read