SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — The man accused of publicly threatening Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson at a restaurant Wednesday morning admitted to the crime in a jailhouse interview with CBS13.
Fred Nelson, 43, offered a bizarre rationale for the incident that led to his immediate detainment and arrest at the Citizen Hotel at about 8:30 a.m. Wednesday: It was just business, not personal.
“I don’t have anything against Kevin Johnson, I just don’t need nobody stepping in my way,” Nelson said.
Nelson, who says he has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, claims to be a multi-millionaire developer whose plans to expand his empire by building an entertainment complex in the Oak Park neighborhood have been thwarted by the mayor.
“I didn’t want anybody stopping me from developing the Oak Park area,” Nelson said.
Nelson said he saw an opportunity to confront Johnson when he spotted him in the hotel lobby, so he called the mayor over and asked to speak privately with him.
“I said, ‘I think you’ll be out of office in about four hours, I’m sorry,’” Nelson said.
Mayor Johnson said the encounter was “very uncomfortable” and seemed like a credible threat on his life. Police arrested Nelson on a probation violation from past convictions of assault with a deadly weapon.
When asked if he actually planned to kill Johnson on Wednesday, Nelson laughed and said, “Not that day.”
The suspect also offered a cryptic answer when asked if he would be a threat to Johnson in the future.
“I guess they’re going to have to shoot me first and ask questions later,” he said.