Man who threatened Utah governor to spend nearly 5 years in prison
Courts • Defendant sent text to acquaintance saying guv's mansion was "going to be attacked in about an hour."
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

A man who sent emails threatening to attack Utah Gov. Gary Herbert will spend nearly five years in federal prison.

Brian Biff Baker pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court to one count of threatening to use explosives.

Judge Tena Campbell last month gave him credit for time served and recommended that Baker be sent to a federal prison at Terminal Island, a low-security facility in San Pedro, Calif. Campbell also recommended that Baker receive a complete physical and mental health assessment to address his needs for medication and dental work.

The judge also "strongly" urged Baker receive "all possible training and counseling" while incarcerated and that he spend a maximum amount of time in a halfway house once released to ease him back into society. He will be supervised for three years after serving his sentence.

Three other counts pending against Baker were dismissed, as requested by prosecutors.

Last February, Baker was found loitering near the Governor's Mansion, 602 E. South Temple. He had sent a text message to an acquaintance suggesting that the person watch the news because the mansion was "going to be attacked in about an hour." The acquaintance alerted authorities.

Baker also sent texts describing how much ammunition and guns he had and said he was "all camoed out." He also threatened to kill a police officer who was patrolling the area.

Herbert was in the mansion at the time and was escorted to safety.

After arresting Baker, law officers found several dozen rounds of ammunition in his vehicle. Baker has a criminal history that includes bank fraud, theft, and drug charges.

brooke@sltrib.com